Nicola Denzey Lewis, Ph.D (1998), Princeton University, is Visiting Associate Professor in Religious Studies at Brown University. A specialist in Gnosticism, her publications include Introduction to 'Gnosticism': Ancient Voices, Christian Worlds (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012).
Those interested in placing Gnosticism within the context of the intellectual history of the Roman Empire and scholars of emergent Christianity and the religions of Graeco-Roman antiquity.
"focused study that seeks to rebut the characterisation of second-century Gnosticism as a religious philosophy that apprehends the universe as an enslaving force. [...] a rich study, which offers a new way of thinking about the concept of face in Gnostic texts. ...it promises to be a valuable and provocative contribution." – Paul Foster, University of Edinburgh
, in: The Expository Times
"...concise and convincing, [...] the book is clearly-argued [...]. Its critical engagement with the research of the old school dispels scholarly myths and provides a new starting point for debate about how we are to understand the problems of fate, providence, and salvation in late ancient religious life.[...] worthwhile reading not just for students of Gnostic and Hermetic literature, but the New Testament, early Christian studies, and religion in the later Roman Empire as well." – Dylan Burns, Leipzig University
, in: Numen
"...excellent overview of the primary sources whilst producing numerous thought-provoking arguments [...] It is a useful book for anyone interested in second-century thought patterns and is suitable for a wide audience with a range of interests." – Sarah Parkhouse, Durham University
, in: Reviews of Biblical and Early Christian Studies
Table of contents
1. Were the Gnostics Cosmic Pessimists?
2. Nag Hammadi and the Providential Cosmos
3. This Body of Death: Cosmic Malevolence and Enslavement to Sin in Pauline Exegesis
4. Heimarmene at Nag Hammadi: The Apocryphon of John and On the Origin of the World
5. Middle Platonism, Heimarmene, and the Corpus Hermeticum
6. Ways Out I: Interventions of the Savior God
7. Ways Out II: Baptism and Cosmic Freedom
8. Astral Determinism in the Gospel of Judas
9. Conclusions, and a New Way Forward