As I briefly mentioned previously, in the last few days I have been participating in a fascinating conference “Out of Egypt: Israel’s Exodus between Text and Memory, History and Imagination”, at UCSD (at the CALIT2 institute). The conference, which was for invitees only, included a group of historians, archaeologists, biblical scholars, Egyptologists, geoscientists, and others. A wide variety of views and opinions about the Exodus were voiced in the meeting, from those who accept it as a largely historical event, to those who see it as a largely mythical account – and many views in between. The papers given at the meeting, and a few by those that could not make it to the conference, will be published in the future and should provide a very important source for the inter- and multi-disciplinary study, and range of views, about this formative tradition of Israel.
The paper that I presented, “Can Archaeological Correlates of the Mnemo-Narratives of Exodus be Found?” dealt with seeing the Exodus as a long-term development of narratives of collective memory and how they coalesced to form what we now know as the Exodus story.
As I also mentioned previously (see above), this Wednesday, Prof. W. Propp will be giving a popular lecture on the Exodus at UCSD. And, not to forget, all who can should visit the excellent exhibition, curated by Prof. Tom Levy, in which the environmental, cultural and reception history of the Exodus is presented – using fantastically impressive cutting-edge digital multi-media technology.
Excellent conference – and thanks to Tom and the organizers for putting this together!