BOOK TALK: Religious Studies’ Naomi Janowitz on ‘Acts of Interpretation’

Naomi Janowitz headshot, UC Davis faculty, and "Acts of Interpretation" book cover


  • Acts of Interpretation: Ancient Religious Semiotic Ideologies and Their Modern Echoes (De Gruyter, 2022)
  • WHAT: Book talk sponsored by the UC Davis Humanities Institute and International House Davis
  • WITH: The author, Naomi Janowitz, professor of religious studies, in conversation with her faculty colleague Meaghan O’Keefe
  • WHEN: 5:30-7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 11, in person
  • WHERE: International House, 10 College Park, Davis
  • OTHER INFORMATION: Free and open to the public. Light refreshments.

Janowitz draws examples from ancient Israelite verbal and nonverbal divine representation, the apostle Paul’s linguistic letter/spirit model, Christian debates about the limits of language to best represent the deity, Josephus’ aniconic advertisement of Jewish rites, the multilayered divine representations in the Dura-Europos synagogue, the diverse “performativity” of Jewish ascent liturgies, and — the single modern example — the role of art at Burning Man.

The UC Davis Books Blog, a project of News and Media Relations, announces newly published books by faculty and staff authors, and awards and events related to books by faculty and staff authors. Contact the books blog by email.

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Dateline Staff: Dave Jones, editor, 530-752-6556,; Cody Kitaura, News and Media Relations specialist, 530-752-1932,

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