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Programme and Presentations

Tuesday 25/9

9:00–10:35    1. Block: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Religious and Philosophical Conversion. Chair: Hermut Löhr (Bonn)

                                                                                   Welcome by the Dean

9:05–9:50      Keynote lecture: Contemporary Models of Conversion and Identity Transformation, Pierre-Yves Brandt (Université de Lausanne) PPPresentation

9:50–10:35      Keynote lecture: Conversion to Early Christianity: In-Sights from Cognitive Psychology, Rikard Roitto (Stockholm School of Theology) PPPresentation

Coffee Break

11:05–12:40     2. Block: Conversion in the Hebrew Bible. Chair: Udo Rüterswörden (Bonn)

11:05–11:30    The Problematic Return of Ruth, Karl-Heinrich Ostmeyer (TU Dortmund). Handout+PPP

11:30–11:55    Perspectives on Conversion in the Book of Job and the Testament of Job, Michael C. Legaspi (PennState, College of the Liberal Arts)

11:55–12:40    Keynote lectureA Conversion of the Inner Being? The Philology of Shuv in the Hebrew Bible and Beyond, David Lambert (University of North Carolina)

Lunch Break


14:30–16:05     3. Block: Second Temple Judaism – Qumran and the OT Apocrypha. Chair: Michael Legaspi (Penn State)

14:30–15:15      Keynote lecture: Conversion within Second Temple Judaism?, Hermut Löhr (Universität Bonn)

15:15–15:40:    Confession of Sins as Essential Part of a Conversion, Kerstin Böhm (Institut  für Neutestamentliche Wissenschaft, Wien)

15:40–16:05:    To Make Tešuḇā’ (תשובה לעשות): “Turning” in Tannaitic Literature, Francesco Zanella (Dölger-Institut, Universität Bonn/ Universität Hamburg) PPPresentation

Coffee Break

16:30–18:05     4. Block: Conversion in Hellenistic Mysteries. Chair: Jeffrey Ulrich (Rutgers University, New Jersey)

16:30–17:15:    Keynote lecture: Back to a Classic Debate: Conversion and Salvation in Ancient Mystery Cults?, Miguel Herrero de Jáuregui (Universidad Complutense Madrid) Handout

17:15–17:40:   Strategies of Conversion in the Pseudo-Orphic Hieros Logos: A Cognitive Approach, Anna Lucia Furlan (King's College London)

17:40–18:05:  Can an Ass Convert? Lucius' Prayer to Isis as the Beginning of his Self-Transformation in Apuleius' Metamorphoses, Compared to Augustine's Theory of Grace, Friedemann Drews (Universität Münster)

Visit to the Metropolitan Church Agia Trias & Dinner

(Only for speakers and staff)


Wednesday 26/9

8:30–10:30      5. Block: Philosophical Conversion. Chair: Pierre-Yves Brandt (Lausanne)

8:30–9:15:    Keynote lecture: Stoic Conversion and Philosophical Paideia: Conceptual Difficulties and Thematic Affinities, Natacha Bustos (Universidad del Rosario) Handout

9:15–9:40:       The Origins of Conversion in Pagan Texts of the Second Sophistic, Jeffrey Ulrich (Rutgers University, New Jersey) PPPresentation

9:40–10:05:     Conversion to Philosophy in Diogenes Laertius: Forms and Functions, Sergi Grau (ICAC - University of Barcelona) Handout

10:05–10:30:  The Awake and Sober Man’: A Key Motif in the Rhetoric of Conversion of Hellenistic Stoicism, Sharon Padilla (Universität Bonn) Handout

Coffee Break

11:00–13:00     6. Block: Conversion in Paul and the Synoptics. Chair: Günter Röhser (Bonn)

11:00–11:45:    Keynote lecture: 'Consider yourselves dead' (Rom 6:11): Biographical Re-construction, Conversion, and the Death of the Self in Romans, Stephen Chester (North Park University, Chicago) Handout

11:45–12:10:    Christ in the Eye of the Beholder: A Re-reading of Pauline Charis in the Autobiographical Conversion Narratives of Galatians 1 and 1 Corinthians 15, J. LaRae Ferguson (University College, Oxford) Handout

12:10–12:35:    Is there Conversion in the Synoptic Gospels? A “Problemanzeige“,  Phillip Andrew Davis (Universität Bonn) Handout

12:35–13:00     μετανοεῖτε· Dimensions of Conversion in the ‘Sermon on the Mount’, Raul Heimann (FU Berlin) Handout

Lunch Break

14:45–16:05     7. Block: Christian Pseudepigrapha. Chair: Alexander Angelov (Williamsburg, VA )

14:45–15:15:     Keynote lecture: The Elect/Election Concepts and Their Relationship to Conversion/Penitence Experiences in Christian Pseudepigrapha, Kelley Coblentz-Bautch (St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas)

15:15–15:40:   Predestined for Conversion? Reconsidering Heracleon’s “Valentinian” Reading of John, Carl Johan Berglund (Uppsala University) Handout

15:40–16:05:   Conversion from Physic to Pneumatic and vice versa: Moving in and out of a Gnostic Community, Elena Sol Jimenez (University of Cantabria) PPPresentation


Excursion to the medieval city Bad Münstereifel (Prospect)

(Guided city tour and dinner; only for speakers and staff)


 Thursday 27/9

 9:00–10:55      8. Block: Conversion in the New Testament and Early Christianity. Chair: Miguel Herrero de Jáuregui (Madrid)

9:00–9:45:     Keynote lecture: Religious and Philosophical Conversion in Paul and John, Athanasios Despotis (Universität Bonn) PPPresentation

9:45–10:10:      Narrating the Conversion of Corinth. Luke’s Approach to Community Conversions, Daniel Alberto Ayuch (University of Balamand – Lebanon) PPPresentation

10:10–10:35     The Narratives of Conversions in the Acts of the Apostles in the Exegetical Writings of John Chrysostom, Fr. Konstantin Papathanasiou (University of Athens) Handout

10:35–11:00:   The Relationship between Almsgiving and Conversion for the New Testament Αuthors, Matthew N. Williams (Durham University) PPPresentation

Coffee Break

11:30–13:05      9. Block: Conversion in Late Antiquity. Chair: Athanasios Despotis (Bonn)

11:30–12:15:     Keynote lecture: The Question of Origen's Conversion and the Philosophico-Theological Lexicon of Epistrophē, Ilaria Ramelli (Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Milan) Handout

12:15–12:40:     Law and Conversion in St. Augustine: Improving the Current Model, Steven Firmin (Pembroke College, University of Oxford) Handout

12:40–13:05:     Conversion from Byzantium: From Neoplatonism to the Cultural Politics of the Enlightenment, Alexander Angelov (The College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia, USA)


Conclusions 13:05–13:30

Farewell lunch