I am a historian of the late antique and medieval Middle East. My interests are particularly in exploring the dynamics of intercommunal interaction (Christian-Muslim-Jewish) in Abbasid Iraq, in using digital methods (digital humanities) for historical and textual research, and in applying argumentation analysis to historical texts.


2011-2015          Ph.D., Semitic & Egyptian Languages & Literatures (Arabic & Syriac), The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC. Dissertation: “Closest in Friendship? Al-Jāḥiẓ’ Profile of Christians in Abbasid Society in ‘The Refutation of Christians’ (Al-Radd ʿalā al-Naṣārā).” Defended 23.04.15 “with distinction.” Supervisor: Sidney H. Griffith.

2009-2011          M.A., Semitic & Egyptian Languages & Literatures (Arabic & Syriac), The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC. Adviser: Sidney H. Griffith.

2007-2010          M.A. (with honors), Biblical History & Geography (Historical Geography), Jerusalem University College, Jerusalem, Israel. Thesis: “From the Day the Israelites Came up from Egypt: The Exodus as Geographical Argumentation in the Former Prophets according to Toulmin’s Model of Argument.” Supervisor: Paul H. Wright.

2004-2006          B.A. (magna cum laude), Religion (Bible and Communications), Kentucky Mountain Bible College, Vancleve, KY. Adviser: John E. Neihof, Jr.

Blog Posts


    Nathan P. Gibson and David A. Michelson, eds. The New Handbook of Syriac Literature. Syriaca.org: The Syriac Reference Portal. http://syriaca.org/nhsl.

    David A. Michelson (gen. ed.), Jeanne-Nicole Mellon Saint-Laurent, Nathan P. Gibson, and Daniel Schwartz (assoc. eds.). The Syriac Biographical Dictionary. Syriaca.org: The Syriac Reference Portal. http://syriaca.org/persons.

    Upcoming Talks and Conferences

    “Challenges of Polyvalent Infrastructures: The Case of Syriac Studies and Syriaca.org” at Global Philology Open Conference, February 20–23, 2017, Leipzig, Germany. https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/12BN81lNc00yaerqiveLUUz5FI2f9_DaRg8hJOaOumII.

    “Interreligious Contacts among Abbasid Scholars: A Digital Approach using Network Analysis” at British Association for Islamic Studies Conference, April 11-13, 2017, Chester, U.K.

    “Robust Digital Approaches to Literary History: The Case of Syriac” at North American Patristics Society, May 25-27, 2017, Chicago, U.S.A.

    Nathan Gibson

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