Revisions of Gender Constructions in Textual Traditions

The project combines New Testament textual criticism, analyses of the reception of gender constructions, and information science research as well as systematic-ethical investigations.

The central concern of the project is to analyze how digitally assisted research can help interdisciplinary gender studies to new possibilities in analyzing the transmission of texts and the related uncovering of gender understandings. This will demonstrate in an interdisciplinary manner:

  1. how digitization in New Testament scholarship, and in particular in textual criticism, can help to gain new insights, especially with regard to gender studies.
  2. with the help of these instruments, theological gender research is to be advanced with regard to insights into textual evidence of variations as well as the creation of editions in view of the construction of gender, and the question of remembering, handing down and forgetting is to be addressed from a hermeneuticethical point of view.
  3. Information-scientific methods for the automatic identification of gender-specific changes in edition and revision histories are to be developed.

These multidimensional aspects, which encompass the plurality of gender conceptions and textual variants, are subsumed under the term GenderVariants. The notation expresses that LGBTQIA+ intersectionality is examined multidimensionally: gender ascriptions are uncovered in texts and redactions are traced. Historical contextualization as well as principles of change or patterns are elaborated. These findings are linked to contemporary histories of revision. It will be taken into account that gender conceptions in the sense of an intersectional approach are also in relation to discriminations based on social status, origin, appearance, etc. and, to this end, even the conceptions of "masculine" and "feminine" are not to be understood essentialistically, but can be designed fluidly. The extent to which methods of automatic textual analysis are suitable for identifying gender-specific differences between different variants and editions will be investigated. In addition to the New Testament texts, the automatic identification methods are applied to Wikipedia revision histories. This will enable both the generalizability of the methods and their direct application in the analysis of current gender issues. The research project contributes to the research the desiderata in theology, gender studies and computer science.

Project partners:

  • Dr. Soham Al-Suadi, University of Rostock
  • Dr. Gotlind Britta Ulshöfer, University of Tübingen

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