“I know it as I know that my name is L.W.”
(Ludwig Wittgenstein, On Certainty , § 328)
Name: Luigi Walt.
Birth year: 1975.
Provenance: Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy.
How I spend my life: I am (or supposed to be) a historian of religion specializing in New Testament and early Christian studies. I work as a postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Centre for Advanced Studies “Beyond Canon” (CASBC), University of Regensburg, Germany, where I enjoy practicing the noble art of the footnote (in all of its variants: bibliography, commentary, cross-referencing, digression, scribble etc.). For further details, you can look at my tedious Research Portfolio.
Research interests: My research work revolves around the cultural history of ancient Christianity, with a special focus on the early Jesus tradition, the letters of Paul, and the interplay between Jewish, Christian, and Greco-Roman practices of reading and writing in antiquity. I also have a keen interest in questions relating to the history of biblical interpretation, as well as in issues of method and theory in the comparative study of religion.
Academic degree: Ph.D. in “Religious Studies: Social Sciences and Historical Studies of Religions” (University of Bologna, 2008).
Professional ethics: Following Jonathan Z. Smith, I am convinced that the first task of the historian is to complicate rather than simplify – and nowhere more so than in the study of religion. Historians should strive to celebrate “the diversity of manners, the variety of species, the opacity of things.”
Academic affiliations: Association pour l’étude de la littérature apocryphe chrétienne (AELAC), Centro Italiano di Studi Superiori sulle Religioni / Italian Centre for Advanced Studies on Religions (CISSR), European Association of Biblical Studies (EABS), European Association for the Study of Religions (EASR), Societas Spinozana (SocSpi), Society of Biblical Literature (SBL).