Ellen van Wolde - Curriculum Vitae#

  • 1984-1989: PhD (cum laude). Catholic University of Nijmegen [Supervisors: Prof.dr. B. M. F. van Iersel and Prof. dr. W. A. M. Beuken]]
  • 1982-1983: MA in Semiotics [with Umberto Eco]], Università degli Studi Bologna, Italy.
  • 1980-1981: MA in Hebrew Bible (cum laude), Catholic University of Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
  • 1978-1980: MA Biblical Studies, Pontificium Institutum Biblicum, Rome, Italy.
  • 1976-1978: MA Biblical Studies, Catholic University Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
  • 1973-1976: BA Studies, Theology, Catholic University of Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
  • 1967-1973: Gymnasium B, St. Maartenscollege, Haren (Groningen), The Netherlands.


Van Wolde received her first professorship at the age of 37 at the University of Tilburg in The Netherlands, where she developed research programs in which Master’s and PhD students have been effectively trained and educated, and where she organised interdisciplinary conferences that enabled world experts in Biblical Studies and Linguistics (resp. discourse syntax and cognitive linguistics) to meet and collaborate. She contributed to the Honours Programme of the University of Tilburg and this course has been rated ‘best course’ by its students and acknowledged as such by the University Board. In 2009 she was appointed full professor at the Radboud University in Nijmegen, and since then she has established appealing teaching and research programs in Biblical Studies which attracts students from the Netherlands and from abroad. In 2009, she published her opus magnum Reframing Biblical Studies. When Language and Text Meet Culture, Cognition, and Context, in which she develops an integrative approach of cognitive linguistics, archaeology, and cultural studies for the study of the Hebrew Bible. Also in 2009 she carried out a cognitive linguistic and comparative study of the meaning of the Hebrew verb bara in Genesis 1, in which she tried to demonstrate that this verb expresses the action of separation instead of creation, so that Gen. 1:1 should be translated as ‘In the beginning when God separated the heaven and the earth’. The study was broadly discussed in the debate between biblical scholars and in the media (television, radio, newspapers – full front page and page length articles in 7 national newspapers, and in international newspapers such as The Daily Telegraph); it led to publications in academic journals (The Journal of Hebrew Scriptures 2009-2011), conference meetings (Society for the Study of the Old Testament Jan. 2011, Society of Biblical Literature Nov. 2011), and discussions in academic books.

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