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School of Theology and Ministry

Christopher Frechette

assistant professor of old testament

110608LP033

Contact Information:
Email: christopher.frechette.1@bc.edu
Phone Office: 617-396-4593

Address:
Boston College
School of Theology and Ministry
140 Commonwealth Ave.
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

Dr. Frechette's primary passion for research and teaching is to interpret the biblical text in ways that uncover its capacity to support people in cultivating relationship with God, particularly when they face complex and difficult situations. His scholarship focuses mainly on interpreting the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible and related ancient texts. However, in his teaching he stresses that both testaments constitute for Christians a single canon, and he helps students to see relationships among particular texts across both testaments.

 

Dr. Frechette recognize that much of what is in the Bible, especially the Old Testament, can seem strange and even bizarre to modern readers. His work in the languages, literature, history, and cultures of the ancient Near East is aimed at interpreting these texts in ways that are grounded in the human realities from which they emerged and in which they were employed in antiquity. He also attempts to draw analogies between contemporary human experience and what is reflected in the biblical texts. In this regard, he is particularly interested in employing insights from the social sciences into how people experience, respond to, and recover from loss and trauma. He is currently co-chair of the consultation for the Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting, "Biblical Literature and the Hermeneutics of Trauma."

 

For a window into how Dr. Frechette's research into ancient culture informs his biblical scholarship, visit the Boston College Library Faculty Publication Highlights site which features a 30-minute video interview of him discussing his recent monograph.

During academic year 2013-14, Dr. Frechette is on leave of absence from the School of Theology and Ministry.


Courses:
TM 514- The Psalms: Prayer of Israel, Prayer of Christians
TM 515- Core Narrative of OT: Genesis to 2 Kings
TM 641- The Prophets from Moses to Jesus
TM 708- Depictions of God in the Bible
TM 711- Seminar: The Book of Isaiah
TM 821- Grief and the Bible
TM 826- Introduction to the Old Testament


Recent Publications:

Mesopotamian Ritual-prayers of “Hand-lifting” (Akkadian Šuillas): A Investigation of Function in Light of the Idiomatic Meaning of the Rubric. Alter Orient und Altes Testament, no. 379. Münster: Ugarit-Verlag, 2012.  View highlights of this book, including a 30-minute video interview with the author and a published review.

“Blessing 1: Ancient Near East.” In The Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception, edited by H.-J. Klauck, B. McGinn, P. Mendes-Flohr, et al., 4:130–33. Berlin: de Gruyter, 2012.

“The Catholic Biblical Association of America.” In The Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception, edited by H.-J. Klauck, B. McGinn, P. Mendes-Flohr, et al.,  4:1067–68. Berlin: de Gruyter, 2012.

"The Ritual-prayer Nisaba 1 and its Function.” With an edition of Nisaba 1 by Ivan Hrůša. Journal of Ancient Near Eastern Religions 11 (2011): 70–93.

Lenzi, Alan, Christopher Frechette, and Anna Zernecke. “Introduction.” In Reading Akkadian Prayers and Hymns: An Introduction, edited by Alan Lenzi. Ancient Near East Monographs, no. 3. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2011, 1–68.

“A Shuilla: Nisaba 1.” In Reading Akkadian Prayers and Hymns: An Introduction, edited by Alan Lenzi. Ancient Near East Monographs, no. 3. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2011, 351–66.

 

Forthcoming publications:

Monographs:
The Book of Isaiah.
Co-authorship with Blake Couey of two-volume commentary, primary responsibility for chapters 40-66. Illuminations series, Eerdmans, projected 2020. 
 
Grief in the Bible (working title). Under contract with Paulist Press, projected 2014.
 
Journal articles:
“What does ‘Bless the LORD!’ mean?”
(in preparation).
“Interpreting the Old Testament through the Lens of Trauma,” Interpretation (forthcoming, January 2015)

Peer-reviewed articles in books: 
“Why bless God?”
In Reading the Old Testament: Pastoral Essays in Honor of Lawrence Boadt, C.S.P., edited by C. Carvalho. New York: Paulist, in press.
 
“Destroying the Internalized Perpetrator: A Healing Function of the Violent Language Against Enemies in the Psalms.” In Trauma and Traumatization in Individual and Collective Dimensions: Insights from Biblical Studies and Beyond, edited by E.-M. Becker, J. Dochhorn, and E. Holt. Studia Aarhusiana Neotestamentica 2. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht: Göttingen, in press.
 
“‘Happy are Those Who Fear the LORD’: Hope, Desire, and Transformative Worship.” In Hope: Promise, Possibility, and Fulfillment, edited by R. Lennan and N. Pineda-Madrid. New York: Paulist, in press.

Encyclopedia articles:
“Blessings and Curses.”
In The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Bible and Law, edited by B. Strawn. New York: Oxford, in press.
 
“Grief.” In The Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception, edited by H.-J. Klauck, B. McGinn, P. Mendes-Flohr, et al. Berlin: de Gruyter, in press.

Articles in a concise Bible commentary:
“Psalm 151”
and “The Prayer of Manasseh.” In The Fortress Commentary on the Bible. Edited by M. Aymer, M. J. Coomber, C. Briggs Kittredge, et al. Minneapolis: Fortress, in press.