Skip to main content

The Department of Religious Studies presents the fifth annual David L. Dungan Memorial Lecture. Amy-Jill Levine, University Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt Divinity School and College of Arts and Sciences, will speak about “Jesus the Jewish Storyteller: Hearing the Parables Anew.”

The event will take place at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 5 in the James R. Cox Auditorium of the Alumni Memorial Building.

It is free and open to the public. A book signing and reception will follow.

Levine will explore Jesus’ most popular parables—the good Samaritan, the prodigal son, the pearl of great price and others—to explain how they might have been understood by the people who first heard them, and to show how their messages remain relevant for modern readers. Levine’s recently published book, Short Stories by Jesus, reveals how Jesus’ parables, heard in their original context, serve to provoke and to challenge. It also reveals how readers unfamiliar with Jesus’ Jewish context have distorted the meaning of the parables.

In her lectures, Levine combines historical-critical accuracy, literary-critical sensitivity, and a touch of humor. According to her students, Levine wants others to know, understand, and love what she is teaching as much as she does.

This event is sponsored by the Department of Religious Studies along with the Fern and Manfred Steinfeld Program in Judaic Studies, the Marco Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, the UT Humanities Center and the Departments of Classics, English, History, and Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures.


Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,