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Profiles

Amy-Jill Levine

Amy-Jill Levine is E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies at Vanderbilt University Divinity School and Graduate Department of Religion and Director of the Carpenter Program in Religion, Gender, and Sexuality. Prior to taking her position at Vanderbilt, she was chair of the Department of Religion at Swarthmore College. Levine's numerous books, articles and essays address such topics as Second-Temple Judaism, Christian origins, Jewish-Christian relations and biblical women. She has served on the editorial boards of the Journal of Biblical Literature and the Catholic Biblical Quarterly and has held office in the Society of Biblical Literature, the Catholic Biblical Association and the Association for Jewish Studies. She has been awarded grants from the Mellon Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Council of Learned Societies. Levine earned her bachelor's degree at Smith College, where she graduated magna cum laude, and her master's degree and Ph.D. in religion from Duke University.

"The "Gospel of Judas" not only takes its place among numerous 'noncanonical' gospels, acts, and epistles, it also shows that Jesus’ early followers did not feel themselves constrained by the canonical materials. Those who composed and copied the text challenged the traditional characterization of Judas as a villain, espoused a stricter sexual ethic than the canonical gospels, and offered an alternative theology to both the proto-Orthodox church and the Synagogue. In so doing, they tell us much about second century belief and practice, but very little if anything about the man from Nazareth himself."

—Amy-Jill Levine