Ph.B., S.T.B., Ph.D., University of Chicago
Professor of Religion
Specialist in the field known as hermeneutics (interpretation theory) and in New Testament.
Edward C. Hobbs came to Wellesley College in 1981 as Professor of Religion, where he also served as Chairman of the Department of Religion until 1990, and to Harvard University as Sometime Frothingham Professor of New Testament.
Between 1958 and 1981 he was Professor of Theology and Hermeneutics at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California, Professor of New Testament Theology at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, and Professor of Medicine at the University of California (San Francisco Medical Center), where he taught philosophy of medicine. He was also Visiting Professor of Philosophy for seven years at the University of California campus at Davis. Prior to 1958 he had served for a decade on the faculties of the University of Chicago and Southern Methodist University. He has also served as Visiting Professor at the University of Judaism in Los Angeles, as well as the Claremont Graduate School, Southern California School of Theology, Pacific School of Religion, Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, and San Francisco Theological Seminary.
He has delivered major series of lectures at more than fifty universities in America, Great Britain (including Oxford University), and Germany, and has led dozens of week-long conferences for thousands of ministers and laity of the major Protestant and Catholic churches -- Episcopal, Presbyterian, Methodist, Lutheran, United Church, and Roman Catholic. He has presented lecture series on theology and the visual arts at major museums in Los Angeles, Berkeley, and Hawaii.
Dr. Hobbs is a specialist in the field known as hermeneutics (interpretation theory) and in New Testament. He was educated at the University of Chicago where he received degrees in philosophy, theology, and history of culture. He is the author of several books, the first of which was published in 1950 by the University of Chicago Press and the latest in 1990 by the University of California/Center for Hermeneutical Studies, as well as many articles, in a variety of fields which include New Testament, Hebrew Bible, ancient Greek, theology, the fine arts, liturgics, and occasionally wine. Among his avocations is the study, appreciation, and collection of fine wines; and for almost twenty years (until its sale in 1987) he was one of the owners of Ridge Vineyards (whose Cabernets have ranked highest in the world in many international tastings). His appearance on public television as a wine specialist complemented the hundreds of wine-tastings he has conducted for over thirty years.
He has served as President of the Society of Biblical Literature, as Chairman of the New Testament Colloquium, and as Chairman of the Center for Hermeneutical Studies in Berkeley, of which he was a founder in 1969. In March 1986, he was again elected President of the Society of Biblical Literature, two decades after his first election to that position; and in 1989 he was brought back to Berkeley for the twentieth anniversary celebration of the Center for Hermeneutical Studies, speaking on "Hermeneutical Cartography," which is also the title of his latest book.