University of Haifa
Robert Carrady Fellowship

Research Topic

Naturalistic Tendencies in the Hebrew Bible 


Yitzhaq Feder is a lecturer in the Department of Biblical Studies at the University of Haifa. His research synthesizes the traditional philological study of ancient texts with the cognitive science of religions. He has conducted research on purity and pollution in the Ancient Near East, the Hebrew Bible, and the Dead Sea Scrolls, and has examined how this work can be applied to psychological and evolutionary theory. His most recent research focuses on biblical notions of taboo and their implications for understanding the relationship between emotion and morality. 

Feder received his PhD from Bar-Ilan University and has since held academic posts at Tel Aviv University, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and at the W. F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research. He is currently serving as a guest editor of a special issue of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel on the topic “Formation and Transformation of Moral Norms in Ancient Israel.”

Selected publications

  • Blood Expiation in Hittite and Biblical Ritual: Origins, Context, and Meaning (Society of Biblical Literature, 2011)
  • “The Polemic regarding Skin Disease (Dead Sea Discoveries, 2012)



Posing new questions about the theories, institutions, and paradigms shaping the study of nature, and about the cultural and religious consequences that emerge from such study.