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Before and after Babel

April 1, 6:30 pm7:30 pm.

Around 1300 BCE, anyone in the Near East who wished to be considered an intellectual wrote in the Babylonian language and its cuneiform script. Yet 500 years later, individuals throughout the Eastern Mediterranean, including Israel and Greece, expressed themselves in vernacular languages using a multitude of scripts. This lecture by Professor Marc Van De Mieroop, Miriam Champion Professor of History at Columbia University and Director of its Center for the Ancient Mediterranean Center, describes what occurred, explaining why people stopped writing cuneiform and started using alphabets instead. Before and after Babel, published by Oxford University Press, will be on sale.