“The Power of Religion in Late Antiquity”


22-25 MARCH 2007

University of Colorado (Boulder, CO, USA)

Organizers: Andrew Cain, Noel Lenski


Conference volume: Andrew Cain, Noel Lenski, The Power of Religion in Late Antiquity (Farnham: Ashgate, 2009)












All events this day occur in the Center for British and Irish Studies, Norlin Library, West Entrance, fourth floor


10:00        Registration Begins     


1:00-1:30     Welcomes 

Todd Gleeson, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences

Graham Oddie, Associate Dean for Arts and Humanities, College of Arts and Sciences   

Phil DiStefano, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost   

Michael Poliakoff, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research 


1:30-4:00     SESSION 1: Literature and Religious Power 


Chair: Andrew Cain, University of Colorado, Boulder           


Danuta Shanzer (Univ. of Illinois) “Haec quibus uteris verba:  The Bible and Boethius’ Christianity” 


Emily Albu (Univ. of California, Davis) “Disarming Aeneas: Fulgentius on Arms and the Man” 


Josef Lössl (Cardiff Univ., U.K.) “‘Apocalypse? No.’ The Power of Millennarianism and Its Transformation in Late Antique Christianity” 


Felix Racine (Yale Univ.) “Priscian's Periegesis: Sanitized Geography for Christian Students” 


Claudia Rapp (Univ. of California, Los Angeles) “Contested Ground: Hagiography as a Tool of Triumphalist Christianity” 


4:00-4:30     Refreshment Break       


4:30-6:00     SESSION 2: The Center of Power     


Chair: Diane Conlin, University of Colorado, Boulder           


Lucy Grig (Univ. of Edinburgh, U.K.) “Imagining the Capitolium in Late Antiquity” 


Dennis Trout (Univ. of Missouri) “Power Play in the Roman Forum: Felix IV and the Founding of Cosmas and Damian” 


Jacob Latham (Univ. of California, Santa Barbara) “Inventing Christian Rome: Ritual under Gregory I” 


6:00-7:00     Reception sponsored by The University of Denver Honors Program (Alcohol will be served.)  


7:00-8:00     Keynote Lecture introduced by Peter Hunt, University of Colorado, Boulder


RITA LIZZI-TESTA (Univ. of Perugia, Italy) “Augures et Pontifices: Public Sacral Law in Late Antique Rome (4th to 5th centuries AD)” 



Events this day begin in the Center for British and Irish Studies, Norlin Library, West Entrance, fourth floor.

At 4:00 pm events move to Eaton Humanities 1B50.


8:00-8:30     Breakfast   


8:30-10:30   SESSION 3: Constantine and Solar Imagery 


Chair: Linda Jones Hall, St. Marys College of Maryland         


Jacqueline Long (Loyola University, Chicago) “How to Read a Halo: Three (or More) Versions of Constantine's Vision” 


Jan Willem Drijvers (Univ. of Groningen, Netherlands) “The Power of the Cross” 


Fernando Lopez Sanchez (Univ. of Zaragoza, Spain) “A Bull Crowned by Two Stars: The Palatine Banner of Julian the Apostate” 


H. A. Drake (Univ. of California, Santa Barbara) “Solar Power in Late Antiquity, or One Halo Phenomenon Does Not a Christian Make” 


10:30-11:00  Refreshment Break


11:00-12:30  SESSION 4: The Power of the Law    


Chair: Dirk Rohmann, University of Colorado, Boulder          


Erika Hermanowicz (Univ. of Georgia, Athens) "LactantiusDivinae Institutiones and the Origins of Earthly Justice" 


Judith Evans Grubbs (Washington University, St. Louis) “Church, State, and Children: Christian and Imperial Attitudes toward Infant Exposure in Late Antiquity” 


Charles Pazdernik (Grand Valley State University) “‘The Trembling of Cain’: Religious Power and Institutional Culture in Justinianic Oath-Making” 


12:30-2:00   Lunch      


2:00-4:00     SESSION 5: Emperors and Bishops   


Chair: Charlene Kellsey, University of Colorado, Boulder       


Giacomo Raspanti (Univ. of Palermo, Italy) “The Role of Clementia Principis in Ambrose’s De obitu Theodosii" 


Richard Goodrich (Univ. of Bristol, U.K.) “Martin in Purple” 


Hugh Elton (Champlain College, Trent Univ., Canada) “Imperial Politics and Religion in the Mid-Fifth-Century East” 


Hartmut Leppin (J.W. Goethe-Univ., Frankfurt, Germany) “The Respectful Emperor: Justinian and Religious Authorities” 


4:00-4:30     MOVE TO EATON HUMANITIES 1B50, outside which you can enjoy a Refreshment Break    


4:30-6:00     SESSION 6: Ecclesiastical Leadership


Chair: Rodney Taylor, University of Colorado, Boulder         


Lisa Bailey (Univ. of Auckland, New Zealand) “'Our own most severe judges': The Power of Penance in the Eusebius Gallicanus Sermons” 


David Hunter (Iowa State Univ.) “The New Levites: Priesthood, Celibacy, and Power in Late Antiquity” 


Sabine Huebner (Columbia Univ.) “The Interplay between Power and Religion: Requisites and Requirements for a Career in the Eastern Roman Clergy” 


6:00-7:00     Reception sponsored by The University of Denver Honors Program (Alcohol will be served.)  


7:00-8:00     Keynote Lecture, Introduced by Scott Bruce, University of Colorado, Boulder     


DAVID FRANKFURTER (Univ. of New Hampshire) “Religion in the Mirror of the Other” 



All events this day occur in Eaton Humanities, room 150.


7:30-8:30     Breakfast   


8:30-10:00   SESSION 7: Barb(Arian) Power


Chair: Cristiana Sogno, Univ. of California, Irvine         


Ralph Mathisen (Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) “The Iconography of Barbarian Arianism 


Michele Salzman (Univ. of California, Riverside) “After the Fall: Leo's Sermon 84” 


Edward James (Univ. College Dublin, Ireland) “Gregory of Tours and Arianism 


10:00-10:30  Refreshment Break


10:30-12:30  SESSION 8: Chrysostom and Antioch


Chair: Scot Douglass, University of Colorado, Boulder          


Wendy Mayer (Australian Catholic Univ.) “Antioch and the Intersection between Religious Factionalism, Place and Power” 


Stephen Black (Univ. of San Francisco) “John Chrysostom on Power and the Episcopacy in the Late Fourth Century” 


Paul Kimball (Univ. at Buffalo, SUNY) “Sobria Ebrietas and Spiritual Authority in Chrysostom's First Homily at Drypia 


Justin Stephens (Univ. of West Georgia) “Religion and Power in the Early Thought of John Chrysostom” 


12:30-1:30   Catered Lunch (Eaton Humanities Living Room)   


1:30-3:30     SESSION 9: Manipulating the Divine 


Chair: Robert Pasnau, University of Colorado, Boulder          


Aaron Johnson (Loyola Univ., Chicago) “Reading Religion in Porphyry of Tyre 


Elizabeth Digeser (Univ. of California, Santa Barbara) “Ritual, Philosophical Religion, and Power” 


Sergio Knipe (Cambridge Univ., U.K.) “Subjugating the Divine: Iamblichus on the Theurgic Evocation” 


Heidi Marx-Wolf (Univ. of California, Santa Barbara) “The Power of Demons in Intellectual Discourse and Social Practice” 


3:30-4:00     Refreshment Break


4:00-5:30     SESSION 10: The Religious Power of the Material World


Chair: Kirk Ambrose, University of Colorado, Boulder          


Douglas Boin (Univ. of Texas, Austin) “The Transformative Powers of Religion in the Late Antique Landscape of Ostia” 


Diliana Angelova (University of Colorado, Boulder) “A City of Palaces: Imperial Residences and Urban Development in Constantinople, Fifth to Sixth Centuries” 


Bailey Young (Eastern Illinois Univ.) “The Imagery of Personal Objects: Hints of “Do-It-Yourself” Christian Culture in Merovingian Gaul?” 


6:30-10:30   Banquet (Chautauqua Dining Hall, 900 Baseline Rd.)

Buses leave from hotels at 6:15, Eaton Humanities at 6:20. Drivers: south on Broadway to Baseline; west on Baseline to Chautauqua Park.


8:00-8:30     Keynote Lecture, introduced by Todd Breyfogle, Univ. of Denver    


GILLIAN CLARK (Univ. of Bristol, U.K.) “‘The truth shall make you free’: Augustine on the Power of Religion” 



All events this day occur in Eaton Humanities, room 150.


8:30-11:00   SESSION 11: The Late Antique East  


Chair: Campbell Grey, University of Pennsylvania        


Zeev Weiss (Hebrew Univ. of Jerusalem, Israel) “The Jews of Late Antique Palestine and the Roman Games: Rabbinic Dicta vs. Communal Practice” 


Hagith Sivan (Univ. of Kansas, Lawrence) “The Making of Mary and the Jerusalem Episcopate in Late Antiquity” 


Scott McDonough (William Paterson Univ.) “Be Joyful and Listen to the Voice of God: Did Sasanians Know the Bible?” 


John Weisweiler (R. Karls-Univ., Heidelberg / Cambridge Univ., Germany) “Constructing Crusades: Remembering the Persian Martyrs in the Late-Antique Near East” 


Richard Payne (Princeton Univ.) “Persecuting Heresy in Early Islamic Iraq: The Catholicos Ishoyahb III and the Elites of Nisibis 


11:00-12:30  Farewell Brunch and Business Meeting of the Society for Late Antiquity    


1:30-5:30     Cross Country Ski Trip to the Eldora Nordic Center (bus leaves Eaton Humanities at 12:30, Quality Inn at 12:40 and Boulderado at 12:50)


1:30-4:30     Hiking Trip to Eldorado Canyon (bus leaves Boulderado at 1:30 and Quality Inn at 1:45)