Wednesday, 30 May 2012

"My research" - a new, monthly column in the RREblog

My research- by Martin Ehrensvärd, Copenhagen University

I've been asked to write a few words about my research. Well, my early
research was on the incredibly interesting nuances in the use of the
definite article in Hebrew, compared to a bunch of other languages. Then I
moved on to investigating the fascinating syntax of negated infinitives in
Biblical Hebrew, but neither of these subjects is what I will write about
here - for I ended up looking at how syntax, and language in general, might
be used as tool for dating biblical texts.

This turned out to be a controversial topic, especially since I landed
right in the middle of the 'minimalist-maximalist debate'. To put it
crudely, the debate is about whether to date the biblical literature
earlier - in which case it is more likely to contain correct historical
information - or later, in which case it is more justified to read it
primarily as literature/ theological narrative rather than historical

Anyways, what I ended up arguing was that language, as opposed to what the
received wisdom said, didn't seem to be able to serve in the dating of
biblical texts, because we simply do not know enough about biblical Hebrew
to talk with any kind of precision about linguistic dating. The consequence
of this potentially is that the maximalist/ conservative argument is
weakened, since some of the strength of the maximalist hypothesis is
dependent on linguistic dating.

This has led to a fierce debate spanning the last decade. The debate
doesn't seem likely to end anytime soon. For a statement about my views,
you can read a co-authored statement found here:

For an example of criticism, see

- and here is the attempt at a rebuttal of the criticism:

Note how the discussion continues in the comments section below the

Monday, 28 May 2012

a monday in Copenhagen

Some RRE`s decided to meet in town for a coffee/coke/smoothie, and since it was the second day of pentecost, which is a red day in the Danish calender, we chose a table with the clear message:

four of us spent sunday afternoon in a park, chilling out. My supervisor here in Copenhagen told me to enjoy the Danish spring/summer, and as we all know, you should listen to your supervisor.

greetings from sunny Copenhagen,
Hilde :)

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Student scholarships masters level

Here is something you should absolutly look into, if you are interested in Secularism and Religious Freedom.

CMI- Christian Michelsen`s institute is situated in Bergen, which is one of the six host universities of RRE.

:) Hilde

-if the link should not work, type and scroll down the page.

And the winner is.....

Hi guys! It is time you have all been eagerly awaiting.... the announcing of the winning of the caption contest!

In third place is Martin Ehrensvärd for a stunning caption on the idea of the spirit
Second place goes to Jon Jarrett Nygren for his Dungeon and Dragons inspired comment.
The coveted first place goes to Yayha with his warning about crossing Troels borders!

Thanks guys, you are all winners of a yummy chocolate bar next time either me or Hilde see you!

The new photo will be posted shortly, we can't wait for some more witty and perhaps inciting comments!


Friday, 11 May 2012

Guess what they are saying and win a chocolate bar!

This weekend we start a competition here at the blog. By leaving a comment to this blogpost, where you suggest what the professor is telling his student, you enter the competition for winning a nice RREprize. Be creative, have fun!

#Comments considered insulting in any way will be deleted

Sunday, 6 May 2012

we are currently busy studying....please leave a message after the beeping sound

 The road is loooong. Or my bibliography is, at least. Here are some of the books I am currently reading
RREprofessors are truly dedicated. I sent Antti Marjanen an email early in the week to ask about an article he had written, and five days later it was in my postbox:)
Since Annie is currently studying for her Latin exam, I added this picture, which is the list of  assignments for the Latin text course "Pagans and Christians-Dialogue and Polemics" I did last autumn. Good luck with your exam Annie :) And the same goes to the rest of the RRE`s, of course!