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zur shalevHead of the Department of General History, Faculty of Humanities, Haifa Center for Mediterranean History, University of Haifa

Zur Shalev completed his studies at Princeton University (history, 2004). After a post-doctoral stay at Oxford he joined the University of Haifa, where he teaches early modern European history. He specialize in cultural and intellectual history, with particular interest in geographical and religious thought and in Oriental scholarship. Currently he works on geographical Hebraism: an attempt to understand the reception of medieval geographical Hebrew texts in early modern Christian Europe. Another project is focused on the tradition of learned travel to the Levant in the 17th and 18th centuries. At the University of Haifa he convened the Medieval-Renaissance seminar and founded the innovative teaching program Nofei Yeda (Landscapes of Knowledge). Since 2016 he co-edits Mediterranean Historical Review(Routledge). He is co-founder and co-director of the Haifa Center for Mediterranean History. Shalev's published research includes Sacred Words and Worlds (Leiden: Brill, 2011); Ptolemy's Geography in the Renaissance, co-edited with Charles Burnett (London: Warburg Institute, 2011); “Christian Pilgrimage and Ritual Measurement in Jerusalem,” La misura, Micrologus, 19 (2011): 131-150; and “The Travel Notebooks of John Greaves,” in The Republic of Letters and the Levant, ed. A. Hamilton et al. (Leiden: Brill, 2005), pp. 77-102.

gil gambashGil Gambash is a classical historian, studying the ancient Mediterranean. He is the former chair of the Department of Maritime Civilizations and former director of the Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies at the University of Haifa. He is the co-founder and director of the Haifa Center for Mediterranean History. His current projects include the preparation of a book on the Maritime Southern Levant, and a multi-disciplinary research on arid areas and their interaction with the maritime sphere, seeking to explain modes of primary production, habits of consumption, and economic dependencies. His recent publications include 'Governor of Judea and Syria: A New Dedication from Dor to Gargilius Antiquus,’ Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 2018 (with Assaf Yasur-Landau); ‘Disheveled Tenacity: The North Bay of Roman and Byzantine Dor,’ Journal of Maritime Archaeology 2019 (with Ehud Arkin and Assaf Yasur-Landau); and Bygone Fish: Rediscovering the Red-Sea Parrotfish as a Delicacy of Byzantine Negev Cuisine,’ Near Eastern Archaeology 2019 (with Guy Bar-Oz, Ephraim Lev, and Uri Jeremias).
Gil spends the year 2020 at the Institute of Classical Studies in London as a Leverhulme visiting professor, working on ecological perspectives of Mediterranean societies.


An ancient historian interested in rituals and ritual discourses in the religions of the Roman Empire and of late antiquity. He has studied especially issues of discourses of purity and defilement in early Christianity and its historical contexts, and the changing character of oaths in the ancient Mediterranean cultures of the Roman Empire. His book, Purity, Community and Ritual in Early Christian Literature, was published in 2017 by Oxford University Press. 



David Friesem is a senior lecturer of environmental history and the head of the Laboratory for Environmental Microhistory at the Department of Maritime Civilizations at the University of Haifa. He combines field archaeology, geoarchaeology, ethnography, and social theory in order to study the often missing small-scale perspective of human-environment interactions. His research develops new methods to understand how human ecology, technology, and social interactions are constructed by - and in turn modify - the physical, the social and the perceptual environment. His current projects in the   Eastern Mediterranean examines human adaptation during the Palaeolithic and the emergence of complex societies during the process of Neolithization and the transition to the Bronze Age. Personal website: https://sites.google.com/view/friesem-archaeology/home