ASOR Chooses New Officers
A changing of the guard will take place at the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR), America’s prestigious archaeological academy, when a new generation of scholars assumes office in July. The newly-elected president is James A. Sauer, Professor of Syro-Palestinian archaeology at the University of Pennsylvania. Sauer served as director of the American Center of Oriental Research in Amman for six years before coming to the University of Pennsylvania. He is also curator of Syro-Palestinian archaeology at the University Museum.
The new First Vice-President (for Publications) is Eric M. Meyers. Meyers is director of the cooperative program in Judaic Studies at Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has directed five major excavations in Israel and Italy, most recently, one in which a long lost synagogue ark was recovered in Upper Galilee (see “Finders of a Real Lost Ark,” BAR 07:06). As First Vice-President, Meyers will oversee all ASOR publications including the Bulletin (BASOR), the Annuals and the Newsletter.
The new Second Vice-President (for Archaeological Policy) is William G. Dever who will supervise all ASOR field projects, including excavations, surveys and salvage expeditions. Dever lived in Israel for many years where he led the Gezer excavations from 1966–1971 and served as director of the Albright School for Archaeological Research in Jerusalem.
The new officers follow distinguished predecessors who have led ASOR for the maximum of two three-year terms, from 1976 to 1982. Universally admired outgoing president Philip J. King teaches Biblical Studies at Boston University and is president of the Catholic Biblical Association of America. ASOR will soon publish Dr. King’s History of American Archaeology in the Near East.
Outgoing First Vice President David Noel Freedman has served as editor of Biblical Archeologist for the past five years and is one of America’s pre-eminent Biblical scholars. Edward F. Campbell Jr., Second Vice President, is professor of Biblical studies at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. Campbell preceded Freedman as editor of the Biblical Archeologist and is author of Ruth in the Anchor Bible series.
Other ASOR officers will be elected in April to serve in Jerusalem and in Amman.
“Joseph” Opens on Broadway
“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” a musical adaptation by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice of the Joseph story, has opened on Broadway to rave reviews.
The New York Times calls it “a buoyant musicalization of an oft-told Old Testament tale … With its innocent and gently satiric attitude toward sacred material, it is decidedly a musical for young people, the sort of show that could serve as an introduction to the theater and also to Bible study. All singing, no talking, it is both a pop opera and a Sunday school pageant.”
The lyrics and score parody various musical forms. While selling Joseph into slavery, the mean brothers link arms to sing a cowboy number, “One More Angel in Heaven.” Depressed with the difficulty of their lean years, the brothers “sing a song of poverty to a Jacques Brel beat.” Then, rejoicing at their good luck, they sing, dance and drum a calypso. The Times review concludes that the musical is a “felicitous amalgam of sweetness and piquancy.”
The play’s original cast recording is available from the BAR Discount Book Store.
BAR Inspires “Water Tunnel” Exhibit
“Ancient Israelite Water Tunnels—An Evolving Technology,” opens January 13 at the Hebrew Union College/Jewish Institute of Religion and will continue until March 10. The exhibit illustrates the water systems of Iron Age Palestine and demonstrates how and why engineering technology evolved in response to pressures of the times and to conditions of the terrain.
The impetus for the exhibit came from a trustee of the American Schools of Oriental Research who was intrigued by an article written by Dan Cole, “How Water Tunnels Worked,” BAR 06:02. The trustee commissioned Cole to tell his story in exhibit form, showing how a particular technology evolved in the ancient world. In preparing the displays, Cole has also drawn heavily on three other articles in recent issues of BAR: “Digging in the City of David,” BAR 05:04, by Mendel Kaplan and Yigal Shiloh; “In Search of Solomon’s Lost Treasures,” BAR 06:04, by Neil Silberman; and “Jerusalem’s Water Supply During Siege—the Rediscovery of Warren’s Shaft,” BAR 07:04, by Yigal Shiloh. In the exhibit models and artifacts complement photographs and text.
Designed by Patti O’Connor (Designhouse, Omaha, Nebraska), whose photography has appeared in BAR, the exhibit will be available for travel to other educational institutions or museums after its display in New York City. Inquiries should be directed to Dean Paul Steinberg, Hebrew Union College/Jewish Institute of Religion, 1 West 4th Street; New York, NY 10012.
ASOR Chooses New Officers