Dr. Erica C D Hunter is the Senior Lecturer in Eastern Christianity, Dept. for the Study of Religions, SOAS. She is also Chair, Centre of Eastern and Orthodox Christianity, Department for the Study of Religions, SOAS, University of London. She is the organiser of the highly successful annual Christianity in Iraq Seminar Days (inaugurated 2004). For further details see www.easternchristianity.com.
In 1987 she first met the Christian communities of Iraq. Between 1989-1990 she was the Gertrude Bell Fellow of the British School of Archaeology in Iraq and worked on the collections of incantation bowls (written in Syriac, Aramaic and Mandaic) in the Iraq Museum. She still maintains close contacts with the Christian (and Mandaean) communities both in Iraq and in the diaspora.
She was Principal Investigator, for ‘The Christian Library from Turfan’ project that was funded by an Arts and Humanities Research Council Large Grant (2008 - 2011). Turfan (now in Sinkiang Uighur Autonomous Province, western China) was a diocese of the Church of the East. The project has identified and catalogued 500 Syriac manuscripts from Turfan and also explored its connections with Baghdad in the early medieval period (900 – 1300).