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Franziska Naether

Visiting Research Scholar 2015-16

Franziska Naether is assistant professor of Egyptology at the Egyptological Institute and Egyptian Museum “Georg Steindorff” at the University of Leipzig. Her dissertation “Sortes Astrampsychi” focused on a complex Greek lot oracle from Roman Egypt and other divinatory methods and their legacy. Franziska’s research interests include ancient Egyptian literature, religion and its material culture, representation and communication of rulers, papyrology and digital humanities. From 2005 to 2008, she was collaborator of the initial phase of the “Trismegistos” database and is now working for the “Demotistische Literaturübersicht,” a review project for demotic studies featured in the journal “Enchoria” and in Trismegistos.

While at ISAW, Franziska will concentrate on the core chapters of her habilitation thesis “Cult Practices in Ancient Egyptian Literature.” Several cult practices have been attested in ancient Egypt – from various encounters with gods, demons and the death in rituals, procession, oracles and magical spells. These cult practices are featured as well in the literature. It is the aim of this project to analyze all passages of the ca. 200 narrative, instructive and discursive literary works mentioning such cult practices. The main research question runs as follows: Are the cult practices in the literature comparable to what we know from ritual manuscripts or are they described differently to serve other purposes – for example to keep the story exciting? With a twofold methodology from religious and literary studies, she will try to get to the bottom of this question and tackle a cross-cultural comparison in regard to contemporary Greek literature.