Phil Harland – Online Edition of Associations, Synagogues, and Congregations


Dr Philip Harland has made available a revised, online edition of his book Associations, Synagogues, and Congregations: Claiming a Place in Ancient Mediterranean Society (September 2013) with clickable links to inscriptions that are collected together on the book’s sister-site Associations in the Greco-Roman World: A Companion to the Sourcebook.

A groundbreaking study. Harland’s focus on associations in Roman antiquity as a way better to understand civic social life and the social sensibilities of those involved in such associations sets the stage for a reconsideration of the place of ancient Christianities and Judaisms in the Roman order. What emerges is a realistic picture of the ancient Christian associations of Asia Minor that produced such texts as 1 Peter, the Apocalypse of John, and the Pastoral Epistles. This new picture emphasized the concrete, day-to-day ways in which ancient Christians did claim a place for themselves within the empire, and soundly dismisses conceptualizations of Christianity as an isolated sect. This is an indispensable step toward re-imagining ancient civic life, ancient religion, and the origins of Christianity as well.

– William Arnal, University of Regina, Saskatchewan (on the first edition)

Part One (“Associations in Asia Minor“) can be downloaded or read online free, and the entire book may be downloaded at a pay-what-you-will price ($0-$15).