Joe Barber

My research focuses on early Greek hexameter poetry, as well as the history, languages, and literature of Ancient Mesopotamia and the wider Near East. I am especially interested in the connection between these various cultures and the use of comparative approaches to illuminate these texts within their own cultural contexts.

My dissertation examines and compares narratives from Greek, Sumerian, Akkadian, Hittite, Egyptian, and Ugaritic mythologies, as well as the Hebrew Bible. These texts, whose common narrative pattern I aim to identify, all tell of the disappearance or death of a god, its consequences, and its resolution. This topic feeds into my broader interest in ancient conceptions of divinity and humanity, their relationship to one another, and the distinction (or sometimes lack of distinction) between them.

Forthcoming: Walk about the city and see its walls: an allusion to the Epic of Gilgameš in Psalm 48? in Kultur-Kontakt-Kultur: Proceedings of the 66th Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale (Zaphon).