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About us Practical matters How to find us prof. dr. S.N. (Steve) Mason

prof. dr. S.N. (Steve) Mason

Em. Distinguished Professor of Ancient Mediterranean Religions and Cultures

Never imagining that I was cut out for academia, I developed a keen interest in the historical context of early Christianity first. Through a stroke of luck I pursued this interest at Canada's McMaster University, where you could only do such things while studying ancient Judaism. I remained there (with E. P. Sanders, Ben Meyer, Albert Baumgarten, and Alan Mendelson) through the B.A. and M.A. Then I moved to Toronto's University of St. Michael's College for the Ph.D. -- continuing with Al Baumgarten for the Judaism side (seminar and comprehensive). I was again fortunate to spend a year each in Jerusalem and Tübingen while researching and writing. Despairing of work in a bleak hiring situation, I was again fortunate to pick up a two-year contract in Newfoundland and another in Toronto's York University, which then hired me permanently. At York I gradually shifted from Humanities to the ancient field in History, where I was privileged to hold the Canada Research Chair in Greco-Roman Cultural Interaction. Partly seeking a return to normal life, including undergraduate teaching, in 2011 I crossed the pond to take a Chair in Christian origins / New Testament -- focusing much on its Mediterranean 'environment'. When the position opened in Groningen, and I knew the university from my 2014 stay as Dirk Smilde fellow, I jumped at the chance to work with such energetic and visionary colleagues, and on the large canvas of 'ancient Mediterranean religions and cultures', which reflects my research and teaching interests. I arrived here for the 2015-2016 academic year. 

Last modified:25 June 2022 4.38 p.m.