Humanities

UNC Charlotte Graduates Find Success Writing for Children and Young Adults

In the fall of 1984, I joined UNC Charlotte’s English Department with the understanding that I would focus my teaching and scholarship on children’s literature.  During the early years of my career as an English professor, I took a lot of pride and satisfaction in my successes in publishing articles and books.  I remember, for example, when I sold a piece to the New York Times Book Review, I used the honorarium to throw a party for the entire English Department. I started...

Watch New Series “Enslaved” Streaming Live TODAY Only for Free!

You all have perhaps read or heard about the new series on Epix, “Enslaved,” produced by Samuel L. Jackson and three-time Emmy award winner Simcha Jacobovici.  It is a six part series, airing in the US beginning today/Monday, but you can watch it free TODAY Monday and next week, the first two episodes, without an [...]...

Are Women Considered “Property” in the Bible?

From Mesopotamia to Egypt, women in the ancient world were considered property — valuable property, but property nonetheless. And it’s true of the Bible’s view as well. Yes, there were biblical women who flourished in spite of the patriarchy, women like Ruth, Esther, Lydia and Priscilla. But women in the Bible were normally viewed as [...]...

Ancient Toilets, the Essenes, and the Dead Sea Scrolls

I am sometimes asked, “what is your greatest discovery or insight in the world of biblical archaeology?” I have been involved in or stumbled upon quite a few things over the past thirty years, including the “Tomb of the Shroud,” with Shimon Gibson, and our ground-breaking DNA and ancient disease studies, see here and here, [...]...

Gleanings from Genesis: A New Weekly Program Based on the Transparent English Bible

I am very pleased and excited to announce the inauguration of a new weekly series you can listen to or download on the internet in which I discuss week-by-week the new Transparent English Bible’s “Book of Genesis,”–just released last week. You can get your copy at Amazon, US and International sites,  in print or Kindle [...]...

What to Make of an Eating, Drinking, Walking, Talking “Jehovah”

As most of you know I have a new translation of The Book of Genesis now available in print and Kindle editions via Amazon. I have also begun a weekly series working through the book of Genesis, bit by bit, with hosts Jono Vandor and Ross Nichols on the Truth2U.org network. We have recorded two [...]...

Charlotte’s True Crime Writers

My introduction to the genre of true crime took place while I was still in high school.  I decided to read Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood after I saw the 1967 film adaptation of Capote’s book.  Since I had already seen the film. I had a pretty good sense of what to expect from the book, but it still disturbed me. It wasn’t just Capote’s account of the murders of the four members of the Clutter family that got to me; what troubled me the most was Capote’s ability to bring his readers...

Is the Best Known Verse in the Bible Mistranslated?

If Genesis 1:1 is the best known verse in the Bible, and I think it well might be–even over John 3:16–isn’t it quite remarkable that it is mistranslated–and thus badly misinterpreted. This goes back centuries. I have a replica of the Geneva Bible, published in 1560, that was the standard up through the 17th century–even [...]...

Allegra Westbrooks, Charlotte’s Pioneering African American Librarian

courtesy of the Robinson-Spangler
Carolina Room

I never met Allegra Westbrooks.  She retired from the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library (then called the Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County) in 1984, the same year that I arrived in Charlotte.  She did, however, have an impact on my early years in Charlotte.  Soon after my arrival, I met Pat Siegfried, the library’s Director of Youth Services.  When she found out that I once made my living as a professional...

Remembering Geza Vermes (1924-2013)

I recently came across the photo of Geza Vermes below taken at Qumran, the site of the Dead Sea scrolls community. I was reminded of my time with him in January 2008 in Jerusalem. Here is what I wrote in 2013 upon hearing of his death. Geza Vermes, famed scholar of Christian Origins and spet [...]...