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sacklunch last won the day on October 10 2014

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About sacklunch

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  1. I also have a few "master" notes/bibliography documents: e.g. I have a master secondary sources bibliography for my dissertation (word document) and also use Endnote online, which is split up into different research groups. I other documents for ancient sources: e.g. what editions I follow, citation methods (for authors like Galen this is essential), etc. Other documents record phenomena of potential interest down the road (I work in papyrology, so e.g. I have a document recording sigla of interest in papyri I encounter). I must say in response to jujubea that I am not envious of all that physical paper-collecting! I tried something similar for a few years and ended up with more than was feasible to manage. Not only that, but I made more mistakes--juggling multiple books side by side, attempting to keep them flat with multiple weights(!). I much prefer scanning everything, reading and annotating on my ipad with ipencil (which automatically saves and takes the place of the pdf on my computer) and then doing my juggling electronically. I have 4 monitors, so that helps as well, but I find myself making less mistakes and checking references far faster. Plus, you can OCR documents/books after scanned and then search text for keywords, which is a great benefit for those many books without (good) indices. cheers
  2. I wish I could help, but it's not my field. You are going to have trouble finding good answers on this forum; most folks are interested in Christianity, unfortunately.
  3. Yes, they increase your chances. But much of that depends on your subfield. If you work in the premodern world, a good amount of language training is simply required.
  4. You should just ask the schools of interest. No one here will be able to tell you much beyond "maybe".
  5. I suppose my initial response still largely remains valid - i.e. you probably won't have enough coursework in German to take graduate level German classes (and thus those classes you could take, advanced undergraduate courses, will not count towards your degree). You would be better off doing a more general, interdisciplinary M*, say at UChicago, than a divinity degree there or anywhere else. This will allow you to craft the degree you want/need. In response to the post above that a UChicago Div degree is "attractive" -- I respond, to whom? There is no doubt that UChicago is impressive, but the attached "Divinity" will raise certain eyebrows among potential employers in biology et sim. (if I am reading your interests right). Let us say that the UChicago AM in Divinity and the UChicago MAPSS (vel sim.) allow you to take whatever courses you want and that both cost the same: you will be far better off professionally doing the latter, in my opinion. The kinds of divinity schools you're looking at are not well-known for good funding (Chicago, Duke). The only school mentioned here that has good funding, PTS, is an even riskier move, professionally speaking, because it is a standalone divinity school without formal ties to PrincetonU. I have known too many people with "elite" divinity degrees who, after realizing they have no interest in either a) theological careers and/or b) academia, cannot get a decent job. One that comes to mind is a Harvard MTS grad who works at Home Depot now. Good luck, friend.
  6. We need a bit more info on what exactly you plan to do with the German. If you're only minoring in German, then you probably wont be far enough to do graduate coursework in a German department. This is important: thus, some kind of dual degree program or even a MTS might allow you take German classes, but they will probably need to be graduate classes to count toward your degree. This is actually one reason why many Div students don't take classes in other grad departments (e.g. PTS -> Princeton); that is, Div students often do not have the prereqs (divinity schools are often forced to be more introductory, because they usually have little to no prereqs). There is also the stigma attached to divinity schools in the professional world. I have no doubt you would be better off doing an MPP and taking a few classes in religion/theology at the same school than the other way around. "Divinity" feels antiquated, even backward, to many folks in the professional world. Though I can imagine that government jobs, at least in the US, are far more sympathetic. Doing both has its advantages, but as you said I don't think many official dual degree programs exist. I know Duke has such a program and I used to know someone who graduated from it. In any case, such a program adds considerable expense, which I assume for you will be offset by loans. Since there is little benefit, professionally speaking, of doing an MTS and an MPP, I would go for the MPP only (these days, considering the cost for most folks, doing an MTS with no intention of continuing to a PhD is risky, in my humble opinion). For you, that extra year might be worth the 40-50k.
  7. I'd be happy to share mine, though not sure how much use it would be. I work in later antiquity as well. Shoot me a PM if you want and ill email you.
  8. I think we might be talking about different things, but fair enough. I would encourage you to look at European schools for a few reasons. One, even the 'greats' - Oxford, et al. - are comparatively easy to get into; they seem to have far more American, non-traditional students. Second, they will be receptive to you knowing, at this stage, exactly what you want to write your dissertation on (good American schools will not). Third, and most important, you have the funds.
  9. The reason I did not address the question directly, and I suspect the same for the others, is that it is too vague. "Gnostic/Pagan roots of Christianity" may strike some as nonsensical or, in light of scholarship on earliest Christianity in the past few decades, backward looking. So it's hard to recommend any scholar in particular. But, really, this forum is not terribly great for these kinds of questions--I wish it were, but most of the posters and conversations lean toward M* applicants. You are better off a) researching yourself using department websites, google books, jstor, etc. and then b) emailing current doctoral students/scholars in the subfield/s you see yourself in. Re languages, Syriac isn't going to get you very far in "gnostic studies"; there are a few wildly understudied Syriac texts with "gnostic themes" (forgive the imprecision) recovered among the magnificent remains of fourth-century Roman Kellis, but unsurprisingly these are Syriac-Coptic texts, which again brings up the importance of Coptic for studying "gnosticism." But, still again, "gnosticisim" may mean something very different to you than it does me (so you know I'm not completely full of it: I'm writing my doctoral dissertation, mostly I work in Greek papyrology, but I continue to work heavily with the earliest surviving Coptic texts). I am honestly happy to hear you are optimistic! You will without doubt face age discrimination; take some time to browse the current doctoral students at any of the schools you mentioned. I can almost guarantee that none of them will have a single student over the age of 40. The reality, then, is you will probably have to complete a doctoral degree at a lesser known school, which will likely mean no funding or very limited funds, and so on. It really does pain me to type this out, because I know how painful it is to hear you 'can't' do something because of conditions beyond your control. I hope I am wrong and I really do wish you the best of luck.
  10. For a Divinity School, the students, at least the ones I've known, are indeed open minded (as are the faculty). As for studying comparative religion there, good luck? I'm sure they have some good course offerings and obviously Yale U is a different question altogether, but I very much doubt whether YDS is 'ideal' for studying comparative religion. It's a Divinity School and as such many if not most of its classes will have a theological component and thus will be viewed as 'inappropriate' (et sim.) by many academics in the field of religious studies. But in any case, the original question relates to moral theology and for that subfield YDS is a fine choice (though ND is far better known for that subfield).
  11. Haven't read much about this program. You're using OSX I assume?
  12. Good points, both of you. My experience visiting and interviewing there was it's 'ok' if you're a Christian with more traditional social interests. Every single doctoral student I met was Christian and most of them had families. This isn't a criticism, but is only to say that this seemed to have a big impact on the overall social and academic climate there. Most people will have no problem with that climate--because they are 'those' people.
  13. I couldn't, to be fair. Though I don't think I could handle New Haven either. Both are pretty terrible.
  14. Agreed. ND has a much better reputation than Yale Div. Again, I'm speaking of the M* level. The reason: ND is simply much harder to get into than YDS, especially considering we are here talking about ND's MTS vs YDS's MDiv. Completely different ballpark.
  15. I'm not clear what you mean by 'more conservative.' Clarify a bit if you can.
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