Jacob’s Shipwreck: Diaspora and Translation in the Literature of the Jewish and Christian Middle Ages


ACLS Fellowship Program




“Jacob’s Shipwreck” is a study of how Jewish and Christian writers of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries rewrite, translate, and circulate ancient texts, primarily the post-biblical literature of the late antique and early medieval periods. The project focuses on these hybrid medieval Latin and Hebrew texts at the point when they enter into either dialogue or disputation with each other over religious and geographic identities in England and Northern France; this dynamic is especially evident during the period of the Crusades. Some of the wide variety of texts and genres include medieval Latin and Hebrew reworkings of Josephus’ Jewish War, the Anglo-French Play of Adam, and the Latin “Romance” of the patriarch Joseph’s Egyptian wife, Aseneth.