Laurence Lamonde-Mercier is a first-year MPhil student at Blackfriars under the supervision of Professor Hindy Najman. She received her undergraduate degree in Biblical Studies and Hebrew from the University of St Andrews in 2023. Her undergraduate dissertation, for which she won the Gray Prize for best essay relating to the Divinity curriculum, focused on divine presence and intertextuality in Judges 19, specifically looking at the literary purpose of divine absence in the face of human violence.
Laurence’s research interests centre on the interconnectedness of divine presence and violence in the Hebrew Bible and other ancient Near Eastern texts. For her MPhil dissertation, she aims to examine the nature of biblical violence and the role it plays in the construction of social identity, particularly in the triangular relationship between the land, the people, and God, specifically in texts in which the presence of God serves as a punishment to both the land and the people.
Research interests: divine presence and absence; violence; ancient Near East