Dr. José Carlos López Gómez
April 2021 - March 2022
Research Project: Mapping transcultural processes of religious exchange in the Iberian Peninsula from the 3rd to 5th centuries AD
My project aims to explore the analysis of religious change in Hispania during Late Antiquity. To achieve this goal, I pretend to study the literature concerning the religious topography of the whole Iberian Peninsula during the 3rd and 4th centuries with the aim of exploring the historical process of religious change. For that, it will be necessary to collect all the religious inscriptions and archaeological data from sanctuaries, studying the circumstances that explain the abandonment of the epigraphic culture and sacred spaces. Once the material has been collected, steps will be taken to create a series of interactive digital cartographies which aim to map the religious topography of the cities of the Iberian Peninsula during the 3rd and 4th centuries.
On the other hand, my intention is to develop comparative studies provided by material and literary (Christian) sources with the aim of exploring the multiple causes of religious change during Late Antiquity. The main source of analysis would be the martyrial, hagiographic and conciliar sources. This information will be checked against the archaeological data. The aim is to draw up a map in which one could a) locate the cities where information confirms an early abandonment of sanctuaries; b) identify the nuclei where Christian sources document a religious conflict; c) individualise those urban centres where the Early Imperial polytheistic system maintained its vitality during Late Antiquity and establish the durability of such cults, and d) determine whether it was precisely in those nuclei where the religious conflicts documented by Christian sources took place.
Dr. José Carlos López Gómez completed the BA studies in History at the University of Castilla-la Mancha (Spain) between 2010 and 2014. During these years he focused his training in Archaeology and Ancient History, taking part in numerous training courses, and participating in several archaeological campaigns in sites such as Numancia, Segeda, Ieso or Emporion. In 2015 he ended a MA in Research in Humanities, and his thesis was focused on the study of Ancient religion in Roman Carpetania (Hispania citerior). In the same year he obtained a University Teacher Training Grant (FPU) provided by the Spanish Ministry of Education, which made possible to start his doctoral studies at the Carlos III University of Madrid under the tutelage of Prof. Jaime Alvar. On January 17th 2020 he defended his doctoral thesis The Decline of Roman Polytheism in Hispania: religious transformations during the 3rd Century, getting a qualification of Excellent with a distinction cum Laude and International Mention. Months later the thesis was awarded with two prizes: one was given by the prestigious Spanish Pastor Foundation to the best doctoral theses in Classical Studies, the other was the Outstanding Thesis Awards conceded by the Carlos III University. Since September 2020 he works as a supporting researcher in the project Lived Ancient Religion in North Africa (LARNA), conducted by Dr. Valentino Gasparini at the University Carlos III of Madrid, processing the historical and religious information of Roman inscription in North Africa. He is also continuing his research on the analysis of religious changes in Hispania during Late Antiquity as a member of “divine epithets” (EPIDI) project, directed by Jaime Alvar. With his incorporation to RomanIslam Center, he will restart his research on religious changes in Iberian Peninsula during 3rd and 5th centuries through the analysis of sacred spaces.
López-Gómez, José Carlos (2020), “El paisaje religioso de Pax Iulia (Beja) durante el Alto Imperio romano”, Dialogues d’Histoire Ancienne 46/2, 253-275.
Alvar Ezquerra, Jaime / López Gómez, José Carlos / Pañeda Murcia, Beatriz (2019), “La vulva de Atis”, ARYS 17, 191-226.
López-Gómez, José Carlos (2018), “Manifestaciones religiosas de los cultores de los dii selecti en Carpetania romana”, Revista de Historiografía 28, 241-257.