Tony Keddie

Research Interests

  • Religion, Ethnicity, and Economy in the Roman East
  • Apocalypticism in Judaism and Christianity
  • Jewish and Christian Material Culture and Epigraphy
  • Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha
  • Dead Sea Scrolls
  • New Testament
  • Archaeology of Roman Palestine
  • Urban Contexts of Christian Origins
  • Classical Ethiopic (Ge’ez) Language and Literature
  • Theory and Method for Religious Studies and Social History


I am the author of a book on socioeconomic inequality in Palestine during the first century of Roman rule called Class and Power in Roman Palestine: The Socioeconomic Setting of Judaism and Christian Origins; the author of a book on the socioeconomic functions of apocalyptic literature in Second Temple Judaism and Early Christianity called Revelations of Ideology: Apocalyptic Class Politics in Early Roman Palestine (Brill, 2018); and the co-author (with L. Michael White) of a study volume on Jewish literature in Greek from the Hellenistic period called Jewish Fictional Letters from Hellenistic Egypt: The Epistle of Aristeas and Related Literature (SBL, 2018).

I am currently in the final stages of writing a book on political abuses of the New Testament gospels by the American Christian Right. The book is called Republican Jesus: How the Right Has Rewritten the Gospels and it will be published by the University of California Press in September, 2020.

I am also currently co-editing a volume of essays called The Struggle over Class: Socioeconomic Analysis of Ancient Christian Texts with Michael Flexsenhar and Steven Friesen (forthcoming in 2020 with SBL Press). Many of the contributors to this volume have been involved in panels that we have organized at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meetings in recent years in order to stimulate more historically rigorous and theoretically nuanced discussions of the social and economic contexts of ancient Jewish and Christian texts. The authors in this volume represent a diverse group of specialists in the study of ancient Judaism and Christianity who are concerned with the categories that we use to study antiquity. While not all of the contributors agree on a definition of “class,” or whether “class” is even a useful category for the study of ancient religious traditions, they all agree that the question of whether we use “class” categories or alternatives deserves much more attention than it has typically received.

Originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, I received my B.A. in Religion from Temple University, M.A.R. (Master of Arts in Religion) in Second Temple Judaism from Yale University, and Ph.D. in Ancient Mediterranean Religions from The University of Texas at Austin before joining the faculty of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies at UBC in 2017. In recent years, I have been fortunate to receive several awards and fellowships for my research, including the Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fellowship, Carol and Eric Meyers Fellowship at the Albright Institute of Archaeological Research in Jerusalem, Andrew W. Mellon/American Council of Learned Societies Dissertation Completion Fellowship, the Society of Biblical Literature’s Regional Scholar Award. In between teaching and writing, I have enjoyed being involved in archaeological excavations in Israel and Italy—most recently, the excavations of the synagogue in Ostia, Italy.

Follow me on Twitter @KeddieTony

Graduate Supervision

I am always happy to support graduate students in whatever ways I can as they immerse themselves in research on the ancient world and/or the history of religion. I am available to supervise students working on any area of Second Temple Judaism, Early Christianity, economy and religion in the eastern Roman provinces, and theory and method for the study of religion.



Class and Power in Roman Palestine: The Socioeconomic Setting of Judaism and Christian Origins. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019.

Revelations of Ideology: Apocalyptic Class Politics in Early Roman Palestine. Leiden: Brill, 2018.

Jewish Fictional Letters from Hellenistic Egypt: The Epistle of Aristeas and Related Literature (co-authored by L. Michael White). Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature Press, 2018.

Edited Volumes:

The Struggle over Class: Socioeconomic Criticism of Ancient Christian Texts (co-edited by Michael A. Flexsenhar and Steven J. Friesen). SBL Writings from the Greco-Roman World Supplement Series. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature Press. In preparation.

The Psalms of Solomon: Texts, Contexts, and Intertexts (co-edited by Patrick Pouchelle and Kenneth Atkinson). SBL Early Judaism and Its Literature Series. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature Press. In preparation.

Refereed Journal Articles:

“Iudaea Capta vs. Mother Zion: The Flavian Discourse on Judaeans and Its Delegitimation in 4 Ezra,” Journal for the Study of Judaism 49 (2018): 498-550.

“Ezekiel’s Exagoge and the Politics of Hellenistic Theater: Mosaic Hegemony on a Ptolemaic Model” (co-authored by Jonathan MacLellan), Journal of Ancient Judaism 8/2 (2017 [2018]): 170-187.

“Paul’s Freedom and Moses’ Veil: Moral Freedom and the Mosaic Law in 2 Cor. 3.1-4.6 in Light of Philo,” Journal for the Study of the New Testament 37 (2015): 267-289.

“Judaean Apocalypticism and the Unmasking of Ideology: Foreign and National Rulers in the Testament of Moses,” Journal for the Study of Judaism 44 (2013): 301-338.

“Solomon to His Friends: The Role of Epistolarity in Eupolemos,” Journal for the Study of the Pseudepigrapha 22 (2013): 201-237.


“Ptolemaic Sovereignty and the Political Unconscious of 3 Maccabees: Philopator’s Decree (2:28-30) in Light of Late Ptolemaic Asylia Inscriptions.” Pages 193-216 in New Vistas on Early Judaism and Christianity: From Enoch to Montréal and Back. Edited by Lorenzo DiTommaso and Gerbern S. Oegema. Jewish and Christian Texts 22. London: T&T Clark, 2016.

Encyclopedia Entries:

“Alexander Polyhistor,” “Eupolemus,” and “Syria” in T&T Clark Encyclopedia of Second Temple Judaism. Edited by Daniel M. Gurtner and Loren T. Stuckenbruck. 2 volumes. London: T&T Clark, 2019.

Book Reviews:

“Review of Nadav Sharon, Judea under Roman Domination: The First Generation of Statelessness and Its Legacy,” Review of Biblical Literature 08/2018.

“Review of Lester L. Grabbe, Gabrielle Boccaccini, with Jason M. Zurawski, The Seleucid and Hasmonean Periods and the Apocalyptic Worldview,” Review of Biblical Literature 06/2017.

“Review of James M. Scott, BACCHIUS IUDAEUS: A Denarius Commemorating Pompey’s Victory over Judea,” Review of Biblical Literature 12/2016.


“Was the Roman Census a Curse or a Blessing? A Reappraisal of the Census as a Regulatory Mechanism in Early Roman Palestine.” Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting – Early Christianity and the Ancient Economy unit (San Diego, CA), November 25, 2019