At MIKRA, ancient texts merge with innovative technologies.
"MIKRA" (מִקְרָא, cf. Neh. 8:8) is the Hebrew word referring to Scripture, its reading, as well as to its correct interpretation and application. MIKRA also stands for the Manuscript Institute for Knowledge, Research, and Application. As a research laboratory, we specialize in the analysis and documentation of original language religious texts from the Judeo-Christian traditions, as well as to the application of discoveries made in the process of our research. These include codicology, paleography, textual transmission, biblical studies, and related fields.
Manuscripts. The manuscripts that we work with are typically Hebrew and Aramaic religious texts in scroll and codex form, as well as Greek, Latin, and Syriac manuscripts from the Jewish and Christian traditions. Many of these have special historical and cultural significance connected to world events. The bulk of our work emphasizes the Hebrew Old Testament and related materials.
Institute. As an institute, we work independently to train young scholars in the various disciplines of textual analysis, worldview studies, and cultural engagement. As an academic partner, we work with accredited academic institutions (and select others) to provide access to Judeo-Christian religious textual artifacts in instructional environments. Additionally, we work with a consortium of guardian institutions/organizations for the purpose of sharing resources.
Knowledge. To promote knowledge sharing, we utilize diverse public and private platforms including public artifact exhibits, education, and use of digital resources. Public exhibits have included displays and lectures at college and university campuses, performing arts venues, and governmental facilities. We also partner with others to aid in the placement and curatorship of artifacts with appropriate custodians. To ensure the integrity of this process, we do not work with artifacts or items outside of our already established chain of acquisition.
Research. We work with academics, non-profit organizations, and others to produce useable research documents cataloging the specific features of the texts we process. Working with other select research centers, we provide original analysis of artifacts and actively promote responsible curatorship of resources. We are very concerned to promote cultural heritage preservation and seek partnerships with those combating the illicit trade of antiquities.
Application. The end goal of our research is applied knowledge. In addition to the above, we are committed to producing competent handlers of the texts of Scripture, who understand and apply the original meaning of the text with skill and integrity. This is the essence of Mikra.
- Participated in the July 2017 Oxford Center for Hebrew and Jewish Studies workshop in codicology, paleography, art history, and diplomatics, at the Bodleian, Oxford University
- Attended the launch of the Tyndale Center for Bible Translation at The Master's Seminary, March 2018
- Conducted a scroll display and lecture series at the University of Central Arkansas
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- Conducted an artifact exhibit at the Tennessee State Capitol, in Nashville
- Conducted a public scroll and manuscript exhibit at the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort
- Conducted an artifact exhibit at the Gaillard Performing Arts Theater, in Charleston, SC
- Conducted a public artifact and scroll exhibit at the Arkansas State Capitol building