Notre Dame’s First Year Dean Hugh Page edits new book on Africana biblical studies

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Hugh Page

“The Africana Bible: Reading Israel’s Scriptures from Africa and the African Diaspora,” a new book edited by Hugh R. Page Jr., dean of the First Year of Studies and associate professor of Theology and Africana Studies at the University of Notre Dame, recently was published by Fortress Press.

Page directed a team of editors from the Society of Biblical Literature’s African-American Biblical Hermeneutics Section in gathering a groundbreaking collection of essays by biblical scholars from Africa and the African Diaspora.

The essays introduce and explore a wide variety of African and African-Diasporan perspectives on the texts of the Hebrew Bible, Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha; examine Africana historical, literary and cultural matrices for understanding biblical literature; explore the intersections of Bible interpretation with issues of race, ethnicity, nationalism, class, gender and sexuality; consider the role the Bible has played in African and African-Diasporan intellectual history; and provide insight into the interpretive norms and conventions at work in African and African-Diasporan readings of the Bible.

Hugh Page's book cover

The book includes illustrations of artwork reflective of its themes and maps of the world of ancient Israel, Africa and the global dispersion of African people.

According to Page, “The Africana Bible” is “an unprecedented work” that “lays the foundation for a new subfield: Africana biblical studies. It seeks to utilize the life experiences and material cultures of Africana people globally to engage Scripture.”

A member of the Notre Dame faculty since 1992, Page has taught classes in biblical
studies, Near Eastern languages, ancient myth and theology. His scholarly interests include
early Hebrew poetry, Africana biblical interpretation, esoterism in Africa and the African Diaspora, poetry as medium for theological expression, and the use of religious traditions and sacred texts in the construction of individual and corporate identity in the Africana world.

Contact: Hugh R. Page, 574-631-4573,