The reception of the Acts of Thecla in Syriac Christianity: translation, collection, and reception Public Deposited

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Last Modified
  • March 22, 2019
Creator
  • Burris, Catherine
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Religious Studies
Abstract
  • This dissertation examines the reception of an early Christian text - the Acts of Thecla - in sixth-century Syriac Christianity by offering an analysis of the sixth-century Syriac manuscript BL Add. 14,652 as a series of roughly sequential textual acts. These textual acts include composition, translation, and collection, and each of them reflected the interests and assumptions of the Syriac Christians involved. Neither the textual acts nor the resulting texts were initially related, but the fact that they were codicological companions by the sixth century indicates that by that time, the texts or the themes in them were explicitly or implicitly associated in the minds of some Syriac Christians. Through the consideration of the relationship of the Syriac translation of the Acts of Thecla to the Greek original, of the various uses of the Acts of Thecla by Syriac Christians, of the selection and sequence of texts chosen for the component titled collection of the Book of Women, and of the ideas and emphases of the texts that follow the Book of Women in the manuscript, arguments are offered for how such an association of texts occurred and what ideas that association of texts preserved or promoted. While neither the Acts of Thecla, the Book of Women, or the other texts in the manuscript indicate a focus on or even a clear interest in monastic women, the cumulative result of the series of textual undertakings witnessed in the manuscript indicates an eventual association of Thecla with monastic women, an association that authorized and encouraged the female monastic life.
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  • In Copyright
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  • "... in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Department of Religious Studies."
Advisor
  • Ehrman, Bart D.
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
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Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
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  • Open access
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