Prof. Susan Gillingham

Worcester College (Fellow and Tutor in Theology)
Professor of the Hebrew Bible
Phone: 01865 278300

Research and Teaching Interests

Hebrew poetry; biblical prophecy; Israelite religion before and after the exile; biblical archaeology; biblical hermeneutics; the literary shaping of the Psalter; and, most especially, the aims and methods of reception history with reference to the Psalms, and the liturgical, artistic, musical and literary representations of psalmody, both in Jewish and Christian tradition.

Selected Publications

Hebrew poetry

1994 The Poems and Psalms of the Hebrew Bible, Oxford Bible Series, Oxford: OUP (pp. xii + 287). ISBN 0192132423

Biblical prophecy

2010 ‘New Wine and Old Wineskins. Three Approaches to Psalmody and Prophecy’ in Prophecy and the Prophets in Ancient Israel, Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. J. Day), London: T & T Clark , pp. 370-90. ISBN 9780567473646

2002 ‘From Liturgy to Prophecy: The Use of Psalmody in Second Temple Judaism’, Catholic Biblical Quarterly 64/3, pp. 470-489.

1996 'Psalmody and Apocalyptic in the Hebrew Bible: Common Vision, Shared Experience' in After the Exile. Essays in Honour of Rex Mason (eds. J. Barton and D.J. Reimer), Macon, Georgia: Mercer University Press, pp. 147-69. ISBN 0865545243

1996 ‘Messianic Prophecy and the Psalms’, Theology 99, pp. 114-24 (adapted from the University MacBride Sermon on the Application of Messianic Prophecy at Hertford College, January 1993).

Israelite religion

2013 ‘ “Moab is my Washpot.” (Ps.60:8 [MT10]): Another Look at the MLF (Moabite Liberation Front)’ in Interested Readers: Essays on the Hebrew Bible in Honor of David J. A. Clines, edited by James K. Aitken, Jeremy M. S. Clines and Christl M. Maier (Atlanta, Ga.: SBL, 2013) pp. 61-71. ISBN 9781589839250

2013 ‘Praying to the gods in the Psalms: Pursuing John Barton’s “Plain Meaning” Approach’ in Biblical Interpretation and Method. Essays in Honour of John Barton (eds. K.J. Dell and P.M. Joyce) Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 63-73. ISBN 9780999645534

Hermeneutical approaches

2008 ‘Studies of the Psalms: Retrospect and Prospect’ in Expository Times 119, pp. 209-16

2002 The Image, the Depths and the Surface: Multivalent Approaches to Biblical Study, JSOT Sup 354, Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press (pp. viii + 118). ISBN 1841272973

1998 One Bible, Many Voices: Different Approaches to Biblical Studies, London: SPCK (pp. xx + 280). ISBN 0802846610

The literary shaping of the Psalter

2014 ‘The Levites and the Editorial Composition of the Psalms’ in The Oxford Handbook of the Psalms (ed. William P. Brown), New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp.201-13. ISBN 9780199783335

2012 ‘Entering and Leaving the Psalter: Psalms 1 and 150 and the Two Polarities of Faith’ in Let us Go up to Zion. Essays in Honour of H.G.M. Williamson on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth Birthday (eds. I. Provan and M.J. Boda) , SVT 153, Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2012, pp. 383-93. ISBN 9789004215986

2011 ‘A Ninth-Century Irish Bog Psalter and Reading the Psalms as “Three Fifties”’ in Studies on the Text and Versions of the Hebrew Bible in Honour of Robert Gordon (eds. G. Khan and D. Lipton), VTS 149, Leiden: Brill, pp. 373-85. ISBN 9789004217300

2010 ‘The Levitical Singers and the Editing of the Hebrew Psalter’ in The Composition of the Book of Psalms, Bibliotheca Ephemeridum Theologicarum Lovaniensium 238 (ed. Erich Zenger), Leuven: Peeters Publishing, pp. 91-123. ISBN 9789042923294

2006 ‘Power and Powerlessness in the Psalms’ in What is it that Scripture Says? Essays in Biblical Interpretation, Translation and Reception in Honour of Henry Wansbrough OSB (ed. P. McCosker), Library of New Testament Studies 316, London: T &T Clark International, pp.25-49. ISBN 9780567043535

2005 ‘The Zion Tradition and the Editing of the Hebrew Psalter’ in Temple and Worship. Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. J. Day), Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, pp. 308-341. ISBN 0567042626.

Reception History

2013 A Journey of Two Psalms: The Reception of Psalms 1 and 2 in Jewish and Christian Tradition, Oxford: Oxford University Press (pp. xx and 344). ISBN 9780199652419

2013 ‘The Reception of Psalm 137 in Jewish and Christian Traditions’ in Jewish and Christian Approaches to the Psalms. Conflict and Convergence. (ed. S.E. Gillingham) Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 64-82. ISBN 9780199699544

2012 ‘Seeing and Hearing Psalm 137’ in Mótun Menningar/ Shaping Culture. Afmoelisrit/Festschrift Gunnlaugur Jónsson (ed. K. Eyjar), Reykjavík, Hid Íslenska Bókmenntafélag, pp.91-107. ISBN 9789979663003

2011 ‘Reception History and Psalmody: An Introduction to its Aims and Methods with particular reference to Psalm 1’ Revue de Sciences et Religion. Faculté de Théologie Catholique, Université de Strasbourg 85/4 (2011), pp. 571-99.

2008 Psalms through the Centuries, Volume I, Blackwell Bible Commentaries (eds. J.A. Sawyer, J. Kovacs, C. Rowland and D.M. Gunn), Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing (pp. xx + 381). ISBN 9780631218555 . Paperback edition, with new Preface and minor revisions 2012 (pp. xviii + 382) ISBN 9780470674901

2007 ‘Psalm 8 through the Looking Glass: Reception History of a Multi-Faceted Psalm’ in Diachronic and Synchronic: Reading the Psalms in Real Time: Proceedings of the Baylor Symposium on the Book of Psalms (eds. J.S. Burnett, W.H. Bellinger Jr. and W.D. Tucker Jr.), Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies 488 London: T & T Clark International, pp. 167-96. ISBN 139780567026866

1998 'The Messiah in the Psalms: A Question of Reception History and the Psalter' in King and Messiah in Israel and the Ancient Near East. Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. J. Day), Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, pp. 209-37. ISBN 9781850759461

Other aesthetic approaches

2014 ‘Worcester Chapel, William Burges and the Art of Illumination’ in Worcester: Portrait of an Oxford College (eds. J. Bate and J. Goodman) London: Millennium Publishing, pp. 82-9. ISBN 9781906507725

2009 Encountering Burges: Reflections on the Art and Architecture of the Chapel at Worcester College, Oxford, London: Millennium Publishing (pp. 112). ISBN 9781906507473

2002 ‘The Arts: Architecture, Music, Poetry, Psalmody’ in The Biblical World, Vol. 2 (ed. John Barton), London: Routledge, pp. 53-74. ISBN 9780415161053

Selection of Papers and Lectures given outside Oxford

2014 ‘The Story of Moses and David in Book Four of the Psalter (Psalms 90-106)’: guest speaker at BibelForum, an annual Jewish-Christian Colloquium near Munster, hosted by Rabbi Jonathan Magonet.

2013 ‘From Biblical Exegesis to Reception History through Psalm 137’: Gastvortrag, Centrum Oribis Orientalis et Occidentalis, Universität Göttingen, (im Rahmen der Vorlesung von Hermann Spieckermann).

2012 ‘Die levitischen Tempelsänger als Endredaktoren des Psalters’: Trägerkreise in den Psalmen, Forschungskolloquium, DFG-Projekt Theologie des Psalters, Katholisch-Theologische Fakultät, Universität Bonn.

2012 ‘Reception History: Biblical Studies on Holiday? A Personal View’: The Society for Old Testament Study Summer Meeting, Manchester University.

2012 ‘David and Christ Sing the Psalms: the Psalter as Prophecy and Liturgy’: an interdisciplinary analysis of the complex of texts and images in Vat. Gr. 752, a Psalter from Eleventh-Century Constantinople. Convened by Dr. Barbara Crostini (as an Ars edendi Workshop) at the Vatican Library, Rome.

2012 ‘Seeing and Hearing Psalm 137’: Invited speaker for the presentation of Professor Gunnlauger Jónsson’s Festschrift, University of Reykjavik.

2011 ‘Introduction to the Psalter as Songs of the First and Second Temples’ and ‘Jewish Meta-Narratives and Christian Allegories in Reception History: Psalm 137 as a Test-Case’: Singing the Lord’s Song: Day Conference for Clergy and Lay Ministers, Diocese of Rochester.

2011 ‘Jewish and Christian Approaches to Suffering in the Reception of Psalm 137’: Project Psalms: OTSSA Annual Conference on Psalms, hosted by Professor Dirk Human, University of Pretoria, SA.

2011 ‘Reception History and Psalmody: An Introduction to its Aims and Methods with Particular Reference to Psalm 1’: two papers given to École Doctorale, Faculté de Théologie Catholique, Université de Strasbourg.

2010 ‘The Reception of Psalm 137 in Jewish and Christian Traditions’: Conflict and Convergence. Jewish and Christian Approaches to the Psalms. Proceedings of an International Conference highlighting the diverse ways of studying the Psalms, at Worcester College Oxford, 22-24 September 2010; associated with the Theology Faculty and the Society for Old Testament Study and hosted by Professors Barton and Gillingham.

General Interests

Travel, especially as it relates to my research interests.

Gardening, with the challenge of maintaining a (small) two-tier Mediterranean-style garden (with fountains) in the heart of Oxford.

Music and Art, particularly through the reception of psalmody.



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