This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement no 647467). Over the coming five years, the research project will be funded with approx. two million Euros. 
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Stephen Rapp, Jr.

Subproject Caucasus

Stephen Rapp is Professor of Eurasian and World History at Sam Houston State University (USA). He received his PhD from the University of Michigan in Byzantine history with a focus on late antique and medieval Caucasia (especially Armenia, Georgia, and Caucasian Albania). His research investigates cross-cultural and cosmopolitan fabric of Caucasia as well as the region’s membership in the overlapping Romano-Byzantine, Islamic, and especially Iranian worlds. His latest monograph, The Sasanian World through Georgian Eyes: Caucasia and the Byzantine Commonwealth in Late Antique Georgian Literature, was published by Ashgate in 2014. Among other things, he demonstrates the perpetuation of Caucasia’s Iranian and Iranic (Persianate) social matrix for centuries after the Christianization of the isthmus’ three monarchies in the 300s. His ongoing projects include a study of the development and dialogue of Christian conversion traditions among the Armenians, Georgians, and Albanians; an exploration of the polity Aryan Kartli (“Iranian Georgia”) in the late Achaemenid era; and a cross-cultural history of the entire Caucasus region through the Mongol conquest.

 

Dr Rapp has conducted archival and fieldwork in all three republics of post-Soviet Caucasia (Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia) as well as the Russian Federation, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, Ethiopia, and Yemen. Among his research fellowships are awards from Fulbright-Hayes, IREX, National Council for Eurasian and East European Research (NCEEER), and the Social Science Research Council (SSRC).

 

Contact 

Dr. Stephen Rapp, Jr. 
 

srapp@shsu.edu

Vita and Publications

Vita
Positions

  • Since 2015—Professor of Eurasian History, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas, USA
     

  • 2012-2015—Associate Professor of Eurasian History, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas, USA
     

  • 2009-2012—Adjunct Assistant Professor, College of Liberal Studies and University Outreach, University of Oklahoma, Norman, USA
             

  • 2008-2009—Visiting Professor, American Studies Program, Russian State Humanities University (Российско-американский учебно-научный Центр, Российский Государственный Гуманитарный Университет), Moscow, Russian Federation
     

  • 2004-2008—Associate Professor of Eurasian and World History, Department of History, Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA, and Founding Director, GSU Program in World History and Cultures
     

  • 1998-2004—Assistant Professor of Eurasian and World History, Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA

 

Education and degrees

  • 1997—PhD in Byzantine History, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA
     

    • Dissertation: Imagining History at the Crossroads: Persia, Byzantium, and the Architects of the Written Georgian Past. Winner, 1998 University of Michigan Distinguished Dissertation Award.

    • Major fields: Late Roman/Byzantine Empire and Commonwealth, Late Antiquity, and Eastern Christianity; Caucasia (Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Albania, and northern Caucasia, all periods); Islamic Inner Asia and Iran; and medieval Mediterranean and Europe.

    •  Minor field: Greek language (Byzantine, koine, Attic)
       

  • 1992—MA in Byzantine History, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA
     

  • 1990—BA in Political Science with Area Certificate from the Russian and Eastern European Institute (REEI), Indiana University, Bloomington, USA
     

 

Publications

Books

  • The Sasanian World through Georgian Eyes: Caucasia and the Iranian Commonwealth in Late Antique Georgian Literature. Farnham, Surrey—Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2014

  • Studies in Medieval Georgian Historiography: Early Texts and Eurasian Contexts. Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, vol. 601, Subsidia, vol. 113. Louvain: In aedibus Peeters, 2003.
     

Edited Books

  • With Paul Crego, eds., Languages and Literatures of Eastern Christianity: Georgian, The Worlds of Eastern Christianity 300-1500, vol. 5. Farnham, Surrey—Burlington, VT: Ashgate/Variorum, 2012.

  • K‛art‛lis c‛xovreba: The Georgian Royal Annals and Their Medieval Armenian Adaptation, 2 vols. Anatolian and Caucasian Studies. Delmar, NY: Caravan Books, 1998.

 

Articles/book chapters [selection]

  • New Perspectives on ‘The Land of Heroes and Giants’: The Georgian Sources for Sasanian History, published in e-Sasanika, vol. 13 (2014), 32pp. 
    http://www.sasanika.org/esasanika/new-perspectives-land-heroes-giants-georgian-sources-sasanian-history/

  • “The Georgian Nimrod,” in The Armenian Apocalyptic Tradition: A Comparative Perspective: Essays Presented in Honor of Professor Robert W. Thomson on the Occasion of His Eightieth Birthday, Kevork Bardakjian and Sergio La Porta eds., 2 vols. Leiden—Boston: Brill, 2014. Pp. 188-216.

  • Caucasia and Byzantine Culture,” in Byzantine Culture: Papers from the Conference ‘Byzantine Days of Istanbul’ May 21-23, 2010, Dean Sakel ed. Atatürk Kültür, Dil ve Tarih Yüksek Kurumu/Türk Tarih Kurumu Yayınları VIII, Dizi—Sa. 12. Ankara: Türk Tarih Kurumu, 2014. Pp. 217-234.

  • Iberia (Kartli),” in The Encyclopedia of Ancient History, Roger S. Bagnall et al eds. Oxford: Blackwell, 2013. Pp. 3381-3382.

  • Caucasia and the Making of the Second Byzantine Commonwealth: Byzantinization, Cosmopolitanism, and the Georgian Athonites,” in Georgian Athonites and Christian Civilization, David Muskhelishvili ed., Religion and Spirituality. New York: Nova Publishers, 2013. Pp. 57-62. [NB: this essay was edited without my permission. Inter alia, the publisher/editor completely excised the footnotes, and the University of Bern—my principal academic affiliation at the time—was located in Germany (!)].

  • Christian Caucasian Dialogues: Glimpses of Armeno-K‛art‛velian Relations in Medieval Georgian Historiography,” revised version, in Eastern Christianity: A Crossroads of Cultures, Florence Jullien ed. Eastern Christian Studies, vol. 16. Leuven—Paris—Walpole, MA: Peeters, 2012. Pp. 177-199.

  • With Paul Crego, “Introduction,” in Languages and Literatures of Eastern Christianity: Georgian, Rapp and Crego eds., The Worlds of Eastern Christianity 300-1500, vol. 5. Farnham, Surrey—Burlington, VT: Ashgate/Variorum, 2012. Pp. xi-lv.

  • From Bumberazi to Basileus: Writing Cultural Synthesis and Dynastic Change in Medieval Georgia (K‛art‛li),” in Languages and Literatures of Eastern Christianity: Georgian, Rapp and Crego, eds., The Worlds of Eastern Christianity 300-1500, vol. 5. Farnham, Surrey—Burlington, VT: Ashgate/Variorum, 2012. Pp. 321-336. [NB: Reprint of an article originally published in 2001].

  • With Paul Crego, “The Conversion of K‛art‛li: The Shatberdi Variant (Kek.Inst. S-1141),” in Languages and Literatures of Eastern Christianity: Georgian, Rapp and Crego, eds., The Worlds of Eastern Christianity 300-1500, vol. 5. Farnham, Surrey—Burlington, VT: Ashgate/Variorum, 2012. Pp. 105-161. [NB: Reprint of an article originally published in 2006].

  • Caucasia and the First Byzantine Commonwealth: Christianization in the Context of

  • Regional Coherence,” National Council for Eurasian and East European Research (NCEEER) Working Paper. Seattle: NCEEER, 2012. Available online for year 2012 at: http://www.nceeer.org/papers.html

  • Caucasia and the Second Byzantine Commonwealth: Byzantinization in the Context of Regional Coherence,” NCEEER Working Paper. Seattle: NCEEER, 2012. Available online for year 2012 at: http://www.nceeer.org/papers.html

  • With T‛amila Mgaloblishvili, “Manichaeism in Late Antique Georgia?,” in ‘In Search of Truth’: Augustine, Manichaeism and Other Gnosticism: Studies for Johannes van Oort at Sixty, Jacob Albert van den Berg, Annemaré Kotzé, Tobias Nicklas, and Madeleine Scopello eds., Nag Hammadi and Manichaean Studies, vol. 74. Leiden—Boston: Brill, 2011. Pp. 263-290.​

  • The Iranian Heritage of Medieval Georgia: Breathing New Life into the Pre-Bagratid Historiographical Tradition,” Iranica Antiqua 44 (2009): 645-692.​

  • Georgian Sources,” in Byzantines and Crusaders in Non-Greek Sources 1025-1204, Mary Whitby ed., Proceedings of the British Academy, vol. 132. Oxford: Oxford UP/The British Academy, 2007. Pp. 183-220.​

  • Georgian Christianity,” in The Blackwell Companion to Eastern Christianity, Ken Parry ed. Oxford: Blackwell, 2007. Pp. 137-155.​

  • S. Aşurov, V. Baxşəliyev, L. Ristvet, and S. Rapp, “II Kültəpədə 2006-cı il tədiqiqatları,” in 2006-2007-cı illərdə Azərbaycanda aparilmış arxeoloji və etnoqrafik tədiqiqatların yekunlar. Bakı (Baku): NAFTA, 2007. Pp. 33-37. [NB: In Azerbaijani; report of 2006 archaeological survey of the Kültəpə II site in Naxçıvan, Azerbaijan].​

  • Recovering the Pre-National Caucasian Landscape,” in Mythical Landscapes Then and Now: The Mystification of Landscapes in [the] Search for National Identity, Ruth Büttner and Judith Peltz eds. Erevan: Antares, 2006. Pp. 13-52.​

  • With Lynda Garland, “Mary ‘of Alania’: Woman and Empress between Two Worlds,” in Byzantine Women: Varieties of Experience, 800-1200, Lynda Garland ed., Centre for Hellenistic Studies, King’s College London, Publications vol. 8. Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2006. Pp. 91-123.​

  • With Lynda Garland, “Mart‛a-Maria ‘of Alania,’” in De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors, available online at http://www.luc.edu/roman-emperors/maryal.htm

  • With Paul Crego, “The Conversion of K‛art‛li: The Shatberdi Variant (Kek.Inst. S-1141),” Le Muséon: Revue d’études orientales 119/1-2 (2006): 169-226.​

  • Caucasia, region” and “Mary of Alania Byzantine empress, ca. 1050-after 1103,” entries for the International Encyclopedia for the Middle Ages—Online: A Supplement to Lexikon des Mittelalters (LexMA)—Online. Turnhout: Brepols, 2006. Available online at www.brepolis.net/bme

  • Chronology, Crossroads, and Commonwealths: World Regional Schemes and the Lessons of Caucasia,” in Interactions: Transregional Perspectives on World History, Jerry H. Bentley, Renate Bridenthal, and Anand A. Yang eds. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2005. Pp. 167-201.​

  • Caucasia’s Place in the Eurasian World: The Testimony of C‛xorebay k‛art‛velt‛a mep‛et‛a,” in Meot‛xe saert‛ashoriso k‛art‛velologiuri simpoziumis masalebi = Proceedings of the Fourth International Symposium of Kartvelian Studies. T‛bilisi: K‛art‛velologiuri skolis c‛entri/T‛bilisis universitetis gamomc‛emloba, 2005. Pp. 45-55. With Georgian summary, “Kavkasiis adgili evraziul samqaroshi: ‘C‛xorebay k‛art‛velt‛a mep‛et‛a’,” p. 55.​

  • Images of Royal Authority in Early Christian Georgia: The Impact of Monotheism?,” in Monotheistic Kingship: The Medieval Variants, Aziz al-Azmeh and János M Bak eds., Central European University Medievalia. Budapest: Central European University Press, 2004. Pp. 155-172.​

  • With Medea Abashidze, “The Life and Passion of Kostanti-Kaxi,” Le Muséon 117/1-2 (2004): 137-173.​

  • Caucasia,” in The Encyclopedia of Modern Asia. New York: Berkshire Reference/Scribners, 2002.​

  • From Bumberazi to Basileus: Writing Cultural Synthesis and Dynastic Change in Medieval Georgia (K‛art‛li),” in Eastern Approaches to Byzantium, Antony Eastmond ed., Publications of the Society for the Promotion of Byzantine Studies, vol. 9. Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2001. Pp. 101-116.​

  • Sumbat Davit‛is-dze and the Vocabulary of Political Authority in the Era of Georgian Unification,” Journal of the American Oriental Society 120/4 (2000): 570-576.​

  • Christian Caucasian Dialogues: Armeno-K‛art‛velian Co-Existence and Confrontation in Medieval Georgian Historiography,” in Peace and Negotiation: Strategies for Coexistence in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, Diane Wolfthal ed., Arizona Studies in the Middle Ages and Renaissance, vol. 4. Turnhout: Brepols, 2000. Pp. 163-178.​

  • The Pre-Christian Cycle of the Georgian Shatberdi Codex: A Translation of the Initial Texts of the Corpus Mok‛c‛evay k‛art‛lisay (The Conversion of K‛art‛li),Le Muséon 112/1-2 (1999): 79-128.​

  • Medieval Christian Georgia (c. 330-c. 1450),” in National Treasures of Georgia, Ori Z. Soltes ed. London: Philip Wilson Publishers, 1999. Pp. 84-92. [NB: Re-edited without my permission].​

  • Georgian Historical Writing,” in Seeing Islam as Others Saw It: A Survey and Evaluation of Christian, Jewish and Zoroastrian Writings on Early Islam, R.G. Hoyland ed., Studies in Late Antiquity and Early Islam, vol. 13. Princeton: Darwin Press, 1997. Excursus E, pp. 677-686.​

  • Archives and Access: T‛bilisi, Republic of Georgia,” IREX Newsletter (Autumn 1995); repr. in the Newsletter of the Society for the Study of Caucasia (Spring 1996).​

  • The Coinage of T‛amar, Sovereign of Georgia in Caucasia: A Preliminary Study in the Numismatic Inscriptions of Twelfth- and Thirteenth-Century Georgian Royal Coinage,” Le Muséon 106/3-4 (1993): 309-330.​

  • Zviad Gamsakhurdia,” in The Gorbachev Encyclopedia: Gorbachev, The Man and His Times (Mikhail Gorbachev, March 11, 1985-December 25, 1991), Joseph L. Wieczynski ed. Salt Lake City: Charles Schlacks Jr., 1993. Pp. 154-161.​

  • Highlights of Georgian History Holdings at Indiana University—Bloomington,” The Annual of the Society for the Study of Caucasia 3 (1991): 41-64.