Laura Nasrallah


Laura Nasrallah is Associate Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at Harvard University’s Divinity School. Her research and teaching bring together New Testament and early Christian literature with the archaeological remains of the Mediterranean world, and often engage issues of colonialism, gender, status, and power.

Her published books include An Ecstasy of Folly: Prophecy and Authority in Early Christianity and Christian Responses to Roman Art and Architecture: The Second-Century Church Amid the Spaces of Empire. She is also co-editor, with Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, of Prejudice and Christian Beginnings: Investigating Race, Gender, and Ethnicity in Early Christian Studies (Fortress Press, 2009) and, with Charalambos Bakirtzis and Steven J. Friesen, of From Roman to Early Christian Thessalonik?: Studies in Religion and Archaeology (forthcoming, distributed through Harvard University Press). Among her current projects are a book on archaeology and the letters of Paul and a commentary on 1 Corinthians for the Hermeneia series.

Presenter at

Bible & Archaeology Fest XIV, November 18 - 20, 2011
Corinthian Grief? Paul’s Letters and the Roman City of Corinth

This presentation uses archaeological and literary evidence to think about how the Corinthians may have received Paul’s letters. In what kind of cultural context did they live in the Roman city? What were the political realities of their world? What were their economic opportunities and deprivations? What myths and religious practices were alive and well? This presentation argues that archaeological and literary evidence indicates that Corinth may have been a town tinged with stories and realities of grief and death, and asks whether the Corinthians’ practice of “baptism on behalf of the dead” may have emerged in this broader context.

Selected Books by Laura Nasrallah