Laura Suzanne Lieber
Professor of Religious Studies
My primary area of research is in the area of synagogue poetry ("piyyut") from Late Antiquity and the Byzantine period. I examine these works from a variety of perspectives, including literary, performative, and comparative (particularly with early Christian hymnography in Syriac and Greek), and also as a genre of early Jewish biblical interpretation. In recent years, I have begun to integrate the study of material culture into my analysis of these literary works, as part of taking a more fully "contextual" approach to literary analysis. My most recent work approaches late ancient hymnography through the lens of theater studies and performance.
Education & Training:
Ph.D., University of Chicago 2003
M.A., Hebrew Union College 1998
B.A., University of Arkansas at Fayetteville 1994
Lieber, LS. Songs from the Western Shore: Aramaic Poetry from Late Antiquity (Accepted). Cambridge: Brill, 2016.
Lieber, LS. The Vocabulary of Desire: The Song of Songs in the Early Synagogue. Leiden: Brill, July 18, 2014.
Lieber, LS. Yannai on Genesis: An Invitation to Piyyut. Hebrew Union College Press, 2010.
Green, DA, and Lieber, LS. Scriptural exegesis: The shapes of culture and the religious imagination essays in honour of Michael Fishbane. May 1, 2009. Full Text
Lieber, LS. Study Guide to the JPS Bible Commentary: Haftarot. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 2002.
Lieber, LS. "Entering the High Holy Days." Mishkan ha-Nefesh. New York: Central Conference of American Rabbis, 2015. xvii-xix. (Chapter)
Lieber, LS. "Piyyut (Jewish Liturgical and Secular Poetry) (In preparation)." The Encyclopedia of Ancient History. Oxford: Blackwell, 2015. (Chapter)
Lieber, LS. "The Piyyutim le-Hatan of Qallir and Amittai - Jewish Marriage Customs in Early Byzantium." 2014. 275-299.
Lieber, LS. "The Poetry of Creation: Zevadiah and Amittai’s Yotzerot le-Hatan (Groom’s Yotzers)." Recent Developments in Midrash. Ed. D Nelson and R Ulmer. Gorgias Press, 2013.
Lieber, LS. "Kedushah." Cambridge Dictionary of Ancient Mediterranean Religions. Ed. L Fried, ND Lewis, and M Satlow. Cambridge UP, 2013.
Lieber, LS. "Piyyut." Oxford Bibliographies Online. Oxford UP, 2012.
Lieber, LS. "Piyyut (Jewish Liturgical and Secular Poetry)." The Encyclopedia of Ancient History. Blackwell / Oxford UP, 2012.
Lieber, LS. "The Song of Songs." Cambridge Dictionary of Jewish Religion, History, and Culture. Ed. J Baskin. Cambridge UP, 2011. 552-553.
Lieber, LS. "“Piyyut (Jewish Liturgical and Secular Poetry)"." The Encyclopedia of Ancient History. Ed. G Bohak. Blackwell / Oxford UP, 2011.
Lieber, LS. "With One Voice: Elements of Acclamation in Early Jewish Liturgical Poetry." Harvard Theological Review 111.3 (July 2018): 401-424. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "Daru in the winehouse: The intersection of status and dance in the Jewish east." Journal of Religion 98.1 (January 1, 2018): 90-113. (Review)
Lieber, LS. "Jewish Aramaic poetry from late antiquity: Translations and commentaries." Etudes Sur Le Judaisme Medieval 75 (January 1, 2018): 1-245. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "Stages of Grief: Enacting Lamentation in Late Ancient Hymnography." AJS Review 40.01 (April 2016): 101-124. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "On the Road with the Mater Dolorosa: An Exploration of Mother-Son Discourse Performance." Journal of Early Christian Studies 24.2 (2016): 265-291. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "Theater of the Holy: Performative Elements of Late Ancient Hymnography." Harvard Theological Review 108.03 (July 2015): 327-355. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "From the Margins: A Response to ‘Schoeps on Schoeps’." NEXUS: Essays in German Jewish Studies 2 (2015): 33-36.
"Telling a Liturgical Tale: Storytelling in Early Jewish Liturgical Poetry." Zeitschrift für Religions- und Geistesgeschichte 66.3-4 (October 13, 2014): 209-232. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "Setting the Stage: The Theatricality of Jewish Aramaic Poetry from Late Antiquity." Jewish Quarterly Review 104.4 (2014): 537-572. Full Text
Lieber, LS. "The Plot within the Piyyut: Retelling the Story of Balak on the Liturgical Stage." The Journal for Textual Reasoning 8 (2014).