Tonight from 10 p.m. to 11 p.m. CDT on 98.7WFMT Radio Chicago and via free streaming anywhere in the world at wfmt.com, in the first of a two-part program, I talk with Martha T. Roth, editor-in-charge, and Robert D. Biggs, a senior editor, of The Assyrian Dictionary of the Oriental Institute of The University of Chicago, commonly known as the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary or CAD, a 21-volume completed in late spring 90 years after work began on the project at the institute in 1921.
Drawing on generations of scholarly work and translation on the ancient cuneiform script of the ancient west Semitic language known as Akkadian, the dictionary is really more of an encyclopaedia, or even a proto-website, of all aspects of life and thought in ancient Assyria and Babylon. Since a free version of the CAD was posted online in June, the site has had well over 100,000 downloads, including many from Iraq, successor state to ancient Mesopotamia.
Martha Roth is the Chauncey S. Boucher Distinguished Service Professor of Assyriology at The University and dean of the Division of the Humanities. Robert Biggs is professor emeritus of Assyriology and has worked on the Dictionary for almost half a century.
The program will then be posted at wfmt.com/criticalthinking for free podcast, download, streaming indefinitely. Part Two will air next week, Monday September 5, same time, same station.
See you on the radio!