Brigidda Bell

PhD Candidate

Fields of Study

Areas of Interest

  • New Testament
  • Graeco-Roman Religions
  • Prophets, Diviners, Ritual Specialists
  • Social History of Early Christianity


Brigidda is a PhD candidate at the Department for the Study of Religion and the Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies, and she was a Chancellor Henry N. R. Jackman Fellow in the Humanities during 2018-19. Her dissertation examines how early Christian prophets and ritual specialists of the Roman Empire embodied strategies that allowed them to be perceived as credible within a competitive marketplace of religious offerings. Focusing on literary portrayals of the body language of possession, appeals to moral conduct through the exchange of money and services, and the way ethnicity is perceived as a gateway to special knowledge, Brigidda argues that embodied forms of signalling credibility informed debates on true and false prophecy. Through engagement with theories of embodied perception and signalling theory, her research calls attention to the ways that bodies, ancient and modern, persuade and compel.