Dr. Robin J. DeWitt Knauth
Welcome to my Home Page!
Director, Program in Archaeology and Culture of the Ancient Near East and
(formerly "Near Eastern Culture and Archaeology")
See the program requirements from the Lycoming College Catalogue.
office D-314 (AC 3rd fl), campus box 3, email firstname.lastname@example.org,
phone (570)321-4298 (xGAYT), home (570)326-3822 ("DAN-DUBB").
Schedule for Fall 2016:
MWF 8:15 10:05 am HEBR 221A (D-302)
MWF 10:15 11:20 am REL 113A (B-309)
MWF 11:50 12:30 Lunch in Caf
MWF 12:45 1:50 pm REL 226A (B-309)
M/W 2:30 3:30 pm Office Hours (D-314); W Lab Prep (Archaeology Lab)
Mon 4:30 6:00 pm Faculty Mtgs (Heim G-09), occ. School Board mtgs
Fri 3:15 4:20 pm (Nov/Dec) SCHOL 450-A (Lynn 153)
T/Th 7:45 8:35 am (Nov/Dec) ARCH 449W-A (C-300)
T/Th 9:45 11:35 am REL 337W-A (D-302)
Th 11:40 11:55 am Lab Prep (Archaeology Lab)
T/Th 11:55 12:50 Lunch(caf), Schol(Heim G-11), TPAC/TEff (Jonas/Schultz)
T/Th 1:00 2:50 pm ARCH 150 (C-302)
Tu 3:00 4:50 pm ARCH 348/448 Archaeology Colloquium (C-303)
Th 3:00 4:50 pm REL 226A Lab (C-301)
Tu 5:00 9:00 pm occ. School Board mtgs
Th 7:00 8:30 pm Church Choir (Trinity Episcopal Church)
Tentative Schedule for Spring 2017: On Sabbatical!
Office Hours (D-314): M/W 11:2511:45 am, 2:303:30 pm, or by appointment (call, email).
Tutoring is also available through the Academic Resource Center.
Current Courses (Fall2016): Hebr 221; Rel 113, 226, 337W
Course descriptions are taken from the
Lycoming College Catalogue, Religion Section.
Links are for course syllabi. Further links for other course materials will be found within the syllabi.
HUMA 159f4: Origins Myth, Legend, and Archaeology at the Dawn of Civilization (Freshman Seminar fall 2011, 2013, 2014; spr 2016) T/Th 9:45 am, D-301
Human beings, both ancient and modern, seem to have a natural urge to explain the origin of things. This course uses an interdisciplinary approach to explore the origins of civilization in the ancient near East as viewed through (and explained by) ancient mythology, foundation legends, and modern archaeological research. As a Freshman Seminar, this course stresses development of basic skills for the college setting such as critical thinking, critical reading, information literacy, oral and written communication, teamwork, leadership and initiative.
A critical examination of biblical literature within its historical setting and in the light of archaeological findings to show the faith and religious life of the Hebrew-Jewish community in the Biblical period, and an introduction to the history of interpretation with an emphasis on contemporary Old Testament criticism and theology.
REL 224d: Judaism and Islam (taught by George Adams in fall 2004, 2006; spring 2009)*
An examination of the rise, growth, and expansion of Judaism and Islam with special attention given to the theological contents of the literatures of these religions as far as they are normative in matters of faith, practice, and organization. Also, a review of their contributions to the spiritual heritage of humankind.
*(cp HIST 232: The Rise of Islam, taught by Cullen Chandler in spring 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010 MWF 12:45)
*(cp REL 210: Judaic Studies - From the Exodus to the Romans, taught by Pamela Gaber fall 2011 T/Th 1-2:50 pm)
*(cp REL 211: Judaic Studies - Talmud to Today, taught by Pamela Gaber in fall 2010, 2012 T/Th 1-2:50 pm)
*(cp REL 212: Islam, scheduled to be taught by George Adams in spring 2012 M/W 4:30 6:20 pm)
An introduction to basic archaeological method in the Near East with reference to major representative excavations in Israel, along with artifacts and material culture recovered from various historical periods (primarily Bronze Age and Iron Age), including study of the role of archaeology in reconstructing the world in which biblical literature originated, and archaeological results that clarify the biblical text.
A study of the history and culture of ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, Anatolia, and Syria-Palestine from the rise of Sumerian culture to Alexander the Great. Careful attention will be given to the critical use of primary documents (ancient inscriptions) along with archaeology in reconstructing ancient history and culture, as well as to the cultural legacy of the ancient Near East - including ancient Near Eastern religious views as they interacted with the culture and faith of biblical tradition.
Offered in cooperation with the Women and Gender Studies Program, this seminar will involve in-depth study of
a variety of biblical texts and themes relevant to the roles and character of women in the Old Testament, including selections from Genesis, Ruth, Esther, Song of Songs, Proverbs (esp. ch. 31), and the songs of Deborah and Miriam. Excerpts from the prophecies of Hosea and Ezekiel will also be considered. This is intended to be an upper-level seminar, which is offered as "Writing-focused" and thus will incorporate a variety of written assignments and attention to the writing process. Alternate years.
REL 337W: Biblical Topics - Genesis (fall 2016?) T/Th 9:45 am, D301
Genesis is a story of beginnings in the Bible, setting both a universal context and a relational context centered around Gods covenants with his creation and humanity as a while, and with the particular family of Abraham.
This course explores the various traditions conveyed in the biblical book of Genesis within their appropriate historical, political, cultural, literary, and theological contexts. Students utilize various scholarly approaches and methods to better understand the larger biblical message. This is an upper-level seminar offered as writing focused, and thus incorporates a variety of written assignments and attention to the writing process.
King David is a central figure in biblical history and literature, presenting a complex story of heroism,pathos and tragedy. This course will explore the character of David in proper literary, historical, political and theological context utilizing various scholarly approaches and methodologies, to enlighten our understanding of the larger biblical message. Using primarily the books of 1-2 Samuel, with parts of Judges and 1Kings (in the "Deuteronomistic History"), we will look at the development of David's character from various viewpoints in terms of the "charismatic leadership ideal," in contrast with Saul, Absalom and Solomon, and in the context of biblical debates over kingship and temple. Historical background and ancient Near Eastern context will also be important. This is intended to be an upper-level seminar, which will be offered as writing focused and thus will incorporate a variety of written assignments and attention to the writing process.
REL 337W: Biblical Topics - Moses and Exodus (fall 2009?) T/Th 9:45 am, D302
An in-depth study of the character of Moses in the context of the Torah, particularly focusing on the book of Exodus along with other related biblical and ancient Near Eastern texts, employing a variety of academic methodologies. Exodus is an extremely rich book, including a wide variety of genres and themes which are pivotal for the national identity of Israel. Starting with the book of Exodus, we can come to a much deeper understanding of the Old Testament as a whole. This is intended to be an upper-level seminar, which will be offered as writing focused and thus will incorporate a variety of written assignments and attention to the writing process.
An in-depth study of the book of Exodus along with other related biblical and ancient Near Eastern texts, employing a variety of academic methodologies. Exodus is an extremely rich book, including a wide variety of genres and themes which are pivotal for the national identity of Israel. Starting with the book of Exodus, we can come to a much deeper understanding of the Old Testament as a whole. This is intended to be an upper-level seminar, which will be offered as writing focused and thus will incorporate a variety of written assignments and attention to the writing process.
An in-depth study of Israelite Kingship Ideologies in the Old Testament, along the theme of the "Anti-Power Struggle in Israelite Kingship Ideals." Using primarily the books of Judges, 1-2 Samuel and 1-2 Kings (in the "Deuteronomistic History"), we will explore Israelite kingship ideologies in their ancient Near Eastern context, including pro-monarchic and anti-monarchic biases within the texts, and especially the charismatic leadership ideal as exemplified by King David and contradicted by Solomon. This is intended to be an upper-level seminar, which will be offered as writing focused and thus will incorporate a variety of written assignments and attention to the writing process.
Fundamentals of Old Testament Hebrew grammar and readings of selected passages of the Hebrew text.
A critical reading of the Hebrew text of selected narrative portions of the Old Testament with special attention being given to exegetical questions. Texts vary in conjunction with current REL 337W seminar: Exodus in 2009, Samuel in 2011, Genesis in 2013. Alternate years. Prerequisite: HEBR 102 or equivalent.
A critical reading of the Hebrew text of selected portions of Old Testament prophecy and wisdom literature with special attention being given to exegetical questions and poetic texts. The texts read vary from year to year.
This year, in conjunction with the REL333 seminar, we will focus on the songs of Miriam and Deborah, Ruth, Esther, Hosea, Song of Songs, Proverbs 31, and other texts relating to Women in the Old Testament.
Alternate years. Prerequisite: HEBR 221 or equivalent.
Find out more about our offerings in Biblical Languages!
Need a tutor for any of these courses? Visit the Academic Resource Center!
Hebrew Tutors: Patrick McGinley, Michael Tusay
Religion Tutors: Patrick McGinley, Michael Tusay, Peter Rojahn
Archaeology Lab Assistants: Emily DiBiase, Peter Rojahn
Research Projects and Publications (see
Current C.V. for more)
"The Jubilee Transformation: From Social Welfare to Hope of Restoration to
Eschatological Salvation in Leviticus 25-26" (adv: Hanson, Machinist).
2005 Dictionary of the Old Testament: Historical Books (InterVarsity, ed. Arnold & Williamson).
Article on "Israel."
2003 Dictionary of the Old Testament: Pentateuch (4 vol., InterVarsity, ed. D. Baker).
Three articles: "Alien/Foreign Resident," "Esau/Edomites," "Israelites."
2000 Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible (Eerdmans, eds. Freedman, Myers).
Five articles: "Jubilee Year," "Sabbatical Year," "Mixed Multitude," "Many Waters," "Rainbow."
* Conference Papers:
2005 SBL (Philadelphia) Pentateuch Section:
"Remembering the Covenant."
2005 SBL (Philadelphia) Biblical Law Section:
"Gorging and Guzzling, Red Stew, and the Cult of the Dead: Brichto Revisited."
2002 SBL (Toronto) Biblical Criticism and Literary Criticism Section:
"Luke's Use of Jubilee Imagery in the 'Song of Zechariah'."
2001 SBL (Denver) Pentateuch Section:
"Jubilee Transformation: Cyrus Edict Inspired Jubilee Pentateuch Redaction as Restoration Propaganda."
2001 SBL (Denver) Egyptology and Ancient Israel Section:
"Egyptian-Biblical Transformations of Trickery and Disaster."
2000 ASOR (Nashville) Mortuary Practices Section:
"'Are There No Graves in Egypt...?' - Supreme Irony, Grave Concern."
1999 SBL (Boston) Deuteronomistic History Section:
"The Law of the King and the Anti-power Struggle in Israelite Kingship Ideals."
1998 SBL (Orlando) Biblical Law Section:
"Debt Release: Cancelled, Suspended or Completed? Double Payment for Sins?"
(to be published in Zeitschrift fur altorientalische und biblische Rechtgeschichte, Harrassowitz, ed. E. Otto).
"When Fallow Follows Fallow: Economic Hardship or Social Welfare in the Jubilee."
1995 SBL Hebrew Scriptures and Cognate Literature Section (on Exodus theft laws):
"A Case of Restitution vs. Retribution."
Archaeology Program Advisory Committee, Theological Professions Advisory Committee (TPAC),
Teaching Effectiveness Committee and Teaching Conference Committee, Symposia, Scholars Program,
Lycoming Crew, Equestrian Club, Baccalaureate Banner, and more...
Society for Biblical Literature, Biblical Law Group, Biblical Archaeology Society,
American Schools of Oriental Research, Archaeological Institute of America,
Society for Pennsylvania Archaeology (North Central Chapter), Mennonite Scholars Network.
French, German, Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, Akkadian, Ugaritic, Phoenician.
Exposure to other NWSemitic and Semitic languages for Epigraphy, Comparative Semitics.
Israel - Tel Gezer, under Dr. Steven Ortiz, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
- Ashkelon, under Dr. Lawrence Stager, Harvard University
Cyprus - Idalion, under Dr. Pamela Gaber, Lycoming College
Pennsylvania - Canfield Island, Snyder Site and Muncy Canal, under Jim Bressler and Robin VanAuken
Outdoors: hiking, canoeing, skiing, rowing; ran 100th Boston Marathon (4 hrs)
Music: choral singing, conducting, folk guitar, flute, piano, recorder, handbells
Church: Presbyterian Episcopal Mennonite
Family: Husband Geoffrey, sons Alexander (3/97) and William (3/99)