Brief Course Description

How do ancient paradigms of land and peoplehood that we discern in sacred texts and traditions of Jews, Christians and Muslims continue to impact nations of Israel and Jordan today? By studying ancient descriptions of land, along with narratives of migration and boundary transgression in sacred texts of the region, we will consider the impact of these ancient texts on contemporary national identities. One of the key boundary markers in the ancient depictions of space is the Jordan River. This continues to be the case today. The Jordan River will serve as a concrete geographical marker from which to explore the nature of contested space and identity in this region of the Middle East.