What do we mean when we talk about "being Christian" in Late Antiquity? This volume brings together sixteen world-leading scholars of ancient Judaism, Christianity, and Greco-Roman culture and society to explore this question, in honor of the ground-breaking scholarship of Professor Gillian Clark. After an introduction to the volume's dedicatee and themes by Averil Cameron, the papers in Section I, "Being Christian through Reading, Writing, and Hearing," analyze the roles that literary genre, writing, reading, hearing, and the literature of the past played in the formation of what it meant to be Christian. The essays in Section II move on to explore how late antique Christians sought to create, maintain, and represent Christian communities: communities that were both "textually created" and "enacted in living realities." Finally in Section III, "The Particularities of Being Christian," the contributions examine what it was to be Christian from a number of different ways of representing oneself, each of which raises questions about certain kinds of "particularities," for example, gender, location, education, and culture.
Bringing together primary source material from the early Imperial period up to the seventh century AD and covering both the Eastern and Western Empires, the papers in this volume demonstrate that what it meant to be Christian cannot simply be taken for granted. "Being Christian" was part of a continual process of construction and negotiation, as individuals and Christian communities alike sought to relate themselves to existing traditions, social structures, and identities, at the same time as questioning and critiquing the past(s) in their present.