Religious Studies Department Faculty

Learn how to think profoundly and communicate clearly about societal issues and existential human questions through research, reading, writing and discussion.


Shane M. Thompson

Assistant Professor of Religious Studies



Ph.D., Brown University
M.A., Brandeis University
M.T.S., Emory University
B.A., Wake Forest University

Research and Teaching Interests

Dr. Thompson is an expert in the religion, languages, and cultures of ancient Anatolia, Egypt, the Levant, and Mesopotamia, using textual, archaeological, and socio-anthropological methods to examine the ancient Near East. He enjoys teaching classes on a range of topics concerning religion and ancient history to instill passion, understanding, and empathy towards ancient cultures and unfamiliar religious traditions.

He has published and presented on an array of topics ranging from pedagogy to primary text editions and is currently revising his dissertation, Power in Public: Displays of Cultural Hegemony and Counter-Hegemony in the Late Bronze and Iron Age Levant (under review with Routledge), into a book to be published in 2022

He is Co-Chief Editor of Avar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Life and Society in the Ancient Near East and the book series, Life and Society in the Ancient Near East (LSANE). He currently serves as Co-Chair of the ASOR sessions Understanding Power in the Ancient World: Approaches, Manifestations, and Responses and Cultures of Mobility and Borders in the Ancient Near East.

Current Projects

Dr. Thompson is also the co-editor of the forthcoming volumes, At the Margins: Interconnections of Power and Identity in the Ancient Near East (University Press of Colorado), Music in the Ancient Near East (Transnational Press London), Sports and Games in the Ancient Mediterranean and Near East (Transnational Press London), and Power in the Ancient Near East, Volume I: Approaches (under review with Eisenbrauns).

In addition, he is working on articles concerning the reality of historical borders within the Book of Amos, and conceptions of underworld borders between polities in the ancient Levant. His next book project deals with the historical realities of King Hezekiah’s cultic reforms at the end of the 8th century BCE.

Screen Shot 2021-08-19 at 10.30.39 AM


Shane M. Thompson

  • School of Humanities
    North Carolina Wesleyan University
    3400 North Wesleyan Blvd.
    Rocky Mount, NC 27804

  • Office Location:
    Elizabeth Braswell Pearsall Library