Myers’ book attracts American Academy of Religion review

The cover of Myers' book, depicting a greco-roman Renaissance style painting of a mother breastfeeding in front of a window

The work of Alicia Myers, Associate Professor of New Testament and Greek, was recently featured in a review published by the American Academy of Religion. Myers’ book,  Blessed Among Women? Mothers and Motherhood in the New Testament (Oxford University Press, 2017), provides extensive research on ways that motherhood was understood in the ancient Greco-Roman world.

The positive review was written by significant scholar of early and rabbinic Judaism, Cynthia Baker, who teaches Religious Studies at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine.

“Dr. Myers has been with the Divinity School since 2014, and has quickly established herself as an outstanding teacher, mentor, and scholar,” said Divinity School dean Andy Wakefield. “Because this book combines important primary research into a foundational part of Greco-Roman society with insightful readings of the New Testament and early Christian literature, it is the type of work that could well pave the way for a generation of scholarship to come.”

Myers’ previous publications include Characterizing Jesus: A Rhetorical Analysis on the Fourth Gospel’s Use of Scripture in Its Presentation of Jesus (2012) and Abiding Words: The Use of Scripture in the Gospel of John (co-editor, 2015). This most recent work applies insights from research on motherhood to a variety of New Testament and early Christian texts.

“This book is a deeply personal book, dealing with issues of faith and family by diving into ancient Roman culture of the New Testament and early Christianity,” said Myers, who encourages her students to investigate the perspectives of ancient characters when forming impressions of a text.

Myers said her book is written for women and men who are curious about all the motherhood imagery in the New Testament, but also for those who may not have noticed all those images before.

“I hope it challenges readers to keep digging deeper, reflecting and thinking about how their faith (and faith traditions) impact us and the world around us.”

Read the review here: