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Eva Kiesele

Image Credit: Lorenz Becker

Former Doctoral Candidate / Research Associate, "Premodern Anthologies"

Former Member, Research Area 3: Future Perfect

Freie Universität Berlin
EXC 2020 "Temporal Communities"
Otto-von-Simson-Straße 15
14195 Berlin

Eva is a trained philologist specialised in late antique rabbinic literature and culture. She completed a B.A. in Judaic and Middle Eastern Studies at Freie Universität Berlin, to then pursue a tailor-made curriculum at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Three successive fellowships allowed her to study in depth talmudic and Middle Persian philology, as well as literary approaches to rabbinic texts. The same period also saw her working for two research projects on Middle Persian Zoroastrian literature.

She continued her path at Princeton University, where she joined the Religion department as well as Princeton’s interdisciplinary “Program in the Ancient World.” Extensive work on talmudic redaction, tradition-building and canonization brought her to believe that the role of language – or perhaps, of a peculiar view of language – for the evolution of rabbinic texts merits scholarly attention. Seeking to pursue an integrated approach that combines talmudic philology with insights from literary theory, philosophy, legal theory, and linguistics, Eva accepted a fellowship in Jewish Law and Legal Theory at Cardozo Law School, New York, and completed a comprehensive exam in Comparative Literature alongside her M.A. Following that, Eva joined the Friedrich Schlegel Graduate School of Literary Studies and the EXC 2020 "Temporal Communities" (Research Area 3: “Future Perfect”) as a doctoral candidate from October 2019 until 2023.

Eva has translated scholarly literature for an anthology of classic articles in rabbinics (Routledge, 2017), and rabbinic sources for the ERC-funded BabMed project. She has received grants from Freie Universität Berlin and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Israel, Princeton University, Princeton Judaic Studies, the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies, and Cardozo Law School.

Former research includes her EXC 2020 doctoral research project, The Event of Language. Speech, Thought, and Writing in the Rabbis (2019-2023).

Peer-reviewed Articles

“Ohrmazd’s Better Judgment (mēh-dādestānīh): A Middle Persian Legal and Theological Discourse” (with D. Agostini and S. Secunda), Studia Iranica 43/2 (2014).

Book Reviews

Rachel Neis, The Sense of Sight in Rabbinic Culture (Cambridge, 2013). The Marginalia Review of Books 06/2014.

Jenny L. Labendz, Socratic Torah: Non-Jews in Rabbinic Intellectual Culture (Oxford, 2013). The Marginalia Review of Books 08/2013.

Academic Translations              

Alexander Kohut, “Die talmudisch-midraschische Adamssage in ihrer Rückbeziehung auf die persische Yima und Meshiasage.” Classic Essays in Early Rabbinic Culture and History. Edited by Christine E. Hayes. Routledge, 2017.

Wilhelm Bacher, “Das altjüdische Schulwesen.” Classic Essays in Early Rabbinic Culture and History. Edited by Christine E. Hayes. Routledge, 2017.