Cesta Seminar with Eric Harvey: "Variance, Population Thinking, and Text-Concepts: The Use of Data in Conceptualizing Hebrew Psalms Literature"
About this talk: The Hebrew Bible has always taken many forms. Prior to the rise of printing, hand-copied manuscripts varied dramatically from the care and expense used in their materials to textual details large and small. In some key ways, the population of medieval Psalms manuscripts is defined more by variation than uniformity, challenging simplistic and essentialist conceptions and representations of the text. Please join us for this talk, in which Eric Harvey will share results from his analysis of more than 400 ancient and medieval manuscripts of the Hebrew Psalms, addressing issues of data collection, organization, and coding and new conceptual possibilities afforded by quantitative methods in manuscript studies.
Eric Harvey is an ACLS Emerging Voices Fellow (2021-22) undertaking postdoctoral research at CESTA. He earned his Ph.D. in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies from Brandeis University in 2020 with his dissertation “Sing to the Lord a New(-ish) Song: The Psalms of the Egyptian Hallel Across Two Thousand Years.” His research combines Book History, Material Philology, and Evolutionary Biology to reconceptualize Hebrew Psalms over the longue durée. He also researches disability in antiquity and advocates for accessibility in digital tools and resources. He keeps a personal site with blog and accessibility resources at www.blindscholar.com.