Professorin Dr. Judith Gärtner

Alfried Krupp Senior Fellow
(October 2021 - September 2022) 

  • Protestant Theology in Münster and Marburg and Jewish Studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
  • Research Fellow, Dept. for Old Testament in Marburg, Hamburg and Siegen, Professor for Old Testament and Early Judaism, University of Osnabrück
  • Professor for Old Testament, University of Rostock

Fellow project: "Resilience in Crisis Situations Ps 35–41 as Paradigmatic Interpretations of Life in the Psalter“

In light of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, the narrative of postmodern societies of self-determination and manageability has been disrupted. The Fellow project links up with an interdisciplinary discourse on resilience in which resilience is understood as a dynamic process in crisis situations and includes experiences of ambivalence in dealing with the crises. Such social crisis situations, which are determined by the ambivalence experiences of the individual as well as of society, are historically not new experiences but typical crisis phenomena, as they are reflected in ancient texts. In particular, the prayer texts in the Hebrew Bible, the Psalms, offer a rich reservoir here.

A complexity of such ancient crisis reflections can be found in Psalms 35–41, which are the focus of my research project. These Psalms will be examined historically, anthropologically, and theologically and interdisciplinarily connected with the resilience discourse. The aim is to profile Ps 35–41 as a literarily reflected and paradigmatic example for interpretations of existence in crisis situations. In these texts, the ambivalences of crisis experiences between fear, powerlessness, despondency, and hopelessness are brought up in such a way that coping with crisis can be described between enduring and shaping. Against this background, the historically analyzed semantics of the Psalms as well as their unfolded existential interpretations can then be questioned in an interdisciplinary discussion with regard to their contemporary relevance for dealing with the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.