This is Wabash Center Blogs's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following Wabash Center Blogs's activity
Join Now!
Already a member? Sign In
Wabash Center Blogs
We support teachers of religion and theology in higher education.
Recent Activity
Image
emilie m. townes Dean and E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Womanist Ethics and Society Vanderbilt Divinity School The opening paragraph of the Vanderbilt University Statement of Commitments: The Divinity School is committed to the faith that brought the church into being, and it believes that one comes more authentically to grasp that faith by a critical and open examination of the Hebraic and Christian traditions. It understands this faith to have import for the common life of men and women in the world. Thus the school is committed to assisting its community in achieving a critical and. Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Roger S. Nam It’s that time of year. Yes, it’s the season where professors often find themselves dealing with breaches of academic integrity. The explosion of online learning, alongside everyone’s massively expanded access to information, has further complicated this issue. Exhausted professors, I’ve got a special holiday gift for you:... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Stories from the Front
Image
Elisabeth T. Vasko Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Theology Duquesne University In recent years, I have taught an upper-level Christology course in which we examine race, gender, and power. Sometimes my students register their dissatisfaction with reading Christology from the margins (James Cone, Kelly Brown Douglas, and Marcella Althaus-Reid) instead of the center (Anselm, Barth, von Balthasar, and Rahner). I can understand their frustration and discomfort. In the classroom, I make an effort to accept it and to take it seriously. I should also note that I teach at a university where the student population is mostly white. By and large, Continue reading
Posted Dec 10, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Kate Blanchard Is anyone else out there taken by surprise, year after year, at how absurdly crazy the weeks feel between AAR and winter break? I’m not complaining – I just had a wonderful time with 10,000 religion nerds in sunny San Diego (which included a video shoot with my... Continue reading
Posted Dec 9, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
Robert C. Fennell, Th.D. Associate Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology Atlantic School of Theology The most uncomfortable thing I ever say among professional colleagues is that when I was a child I was taught that we are all racist. In 1970s Western Canada, where I grew up, racism was real but often obscured by polite indifference and feigned ignorance. Yet our public school system urged us to see that within most of us there is an element that fears and reacts to difference. The terms for this dynamic were probably different then, but that was the heart of the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 5, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
When a school discovers a declining trend in enrollment it's time to huddle for some frantic strategic planning. If anxiety about the enrollment numbers is high enough some will want to talk about how the times they are a changin' for theological education--and how little there is to do about... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2014 at Theological School Deans
Image
Eric D. Barreto Ferguson is revelatory. “I wanted to comment on the tragic rift that we’re witnessing,” Bob Staake says about his cover for the December 8th issue of The New Yorker, arriving next week. “I lived in St. Louis for seventeen years before moving to Massachusetts, so watching the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
Leah Gunning Francis, Ph.D. Associate Dean for Contextual Education​ and Assistant Professor of Christian Education Eden Theological Seminary Now I get it. For the past three months, I couldn’t figure out why a jury would believe that an 18 year old unarmed man would charge – head first – toward a police officer who is shooting at him. Soon after Michael Brown was killed on August 9, several local officials intimated that Brown was charging at Officer Darren Wilson and left no other recourse but to kill him. Why would a person with no history of mental illness or of Continue reading
Posted Dec 1, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Miriam Y. Perkins, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Theology and Society Emmanuel Christian Seminary When Michael Brown was shot and killed in Ferguson, Missouri, I was reading the sermons of Martin Luther King, Jr.[1] “The tension in this city is not between white people and Negro people. The tension is at bottom between justice and injustice, between the forces of light and the forces of darkness.” “… noncooperation and boycotts are not ends themselves; they are merely means to awaken a sense of moral shame in the opponent. The end is redemption and reconciliation.” “Noncooperation with evil is as much a Continue reading
Posted Nov 26, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Eric Barreto, Kate Blanchard and Roger Nam (Eric) I’ve started wondering recently if scholarship boils down to the courage to say something aloud, the courage to say something in the midst of a chorus full of others saying similar or different things. This same description could well be applied to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 25, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
Steed V. Davidson Associate Professor of Old Testament Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and Church Divinity School of the Pacific Each night I watch Jeopardy. Occasionally I am thrilled when Tobago or Trinidad features in a clue. This thrill comes from knowing that the island where I grew up (area of 116 square miles) has found its way into the knowledge required of Jeopardy contestants. I take this small thrill, and I am painfully aware of how small it is, because for most of my life I have been told that the intellectual knowledge that matters consists of material outside of.. Continue reading
Posted Nov 24, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Dr. Himanee Gupta-Carlson Assistant Professor SUNY Empire State College Three stories capture my take on how race matters. Story #1 opens in a grocery parking lot. I park my car and open the door. Trying to remember what I need to buy, I do not notice the pick-up truck beside me as I step out. Then, I hear a male voice bellowing at me to close my door and stop ruining his truck. Hurriedly, I close the door. I apologize and check his vehicle for damages. The man shouts a little louder, glares at me, and revs up his engine... Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Roger Nam Last week, 640,621 high school seniors took the Korean university entrance exam, officially translated into English as the “Collegiate Scholastic Ability Test.” Let me give you a little insight into the life of a high school senior in South Korea. Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
Elias Ortega-Aponte, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Afro-Latinos/a Religions and Cultural Studies Drew University As I geared up to teach two social justice themed courses this Fall, my summer preparations were disrupted by the news of two tragedies and the reflections they prompted. First was the death of Omar Abrego, beaten to death by police on August 2 in Los Angeles. Witness reports claim that Abrego was taken out of his car and beaten up by two police officers for at least 10 minutes, and left in a pool of blood. The father of three would die hours later in a Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Maureen H. O'Connell, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Theology & Chair of Department of Religion LaSalle University If there is one thing I’ve learned from my 20 students in a new course, “Religion and Racism in America” this semester it’s this: how we go about engaging racism in the classroom may be just as important, if not more, than what sources we use to do so. 1. Racism is not an intellectual reality, but an experiential one. Critical race theorist George Yancy is right (not that I ever doubted him!). Racism is an embodied experience and not simply a sociological phenomenon, no... Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Kate Blanchard I recently found myself on a Friday night amid a group of twenty-somethings, mostly women, who were celebrating their periods. Yes, you read that correctly. The students of the women’s resource center on campus decided to host a “menarche party” in honor of their monthly bleeding. They wore... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
Jocelyn McWhirter, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Religious Studies Albion College The time: November 9–10, 1938. The place: Germany. The casualties: More than 7,000 Jewish shops along with 1,574 synagogues damaged or destroyed. One hundred Jews murdered; 30,000 imprisoned in concentration camps. They were the first victims of a racial purge that went on to claim more than 6 million lives. Now, 76 years after Kristallnacht, I am preparing to lead the Holocaust Studies Service-Learning Project (HSSLP). The HSSLP was founded in 1999 by students in a first-year seminar on the Holocaust. They wanted to take their learning out of the.. Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Mara Brecht, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Theology St. Norbert College Teaching race is a boulder. And up the mountain I push it. When I teach race, I feel like Sisyphus because I never seem to get anywhere. The questions repeat and the anxieties recur each semester. It’s always the same: I know what parts of assigned texts will provoke students. I’m prepared for the discomfort, the tears, and the under-the-breath comments. I can even hear the conversations before they happen: White students indignantly protest Peggy McIntosh’s essay on white privilege: “But I had to earn what I have!” They respond... Continue reading
Posted Nov 6, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Eric D. Barreto The Onion is a paragon of satirical news. Unfortunately, too many of us are not in on the joke. Literally Unbelievable is a website that captures those priceless moments when beguiled individuals post “news” items from The Onion as if they were a reputable source of information... Continue reading
Posted Nov 4, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
There are any number of reasons persons become theological school deans. Some reasons are personal, while some are a product of a particular context and its circumstance. In my experience, most deans answer the vocational calling of dean for good-intentioned reasons, sometimes, even noble ones. Most simply want to serve... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2014 at Theological School Deans
Image
Lerone A. Martin, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of religion and politics in the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics Washington University I have heard much talk about Ferguson and racial segregation in my personal life, as well as in the classroom. Conversations about Ferguson abound in my Civil Rights class this semester as well as in the broader university community. It could hardly be otherwise. We are just fifteen miles away from Canfield Drive. As a historian, I aim to help my students understand Ferguson, racial segregation, and all concomitant issues in a broader historical framework. How did we... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Kyle J. A. Small, Ph.D. Associate Academic Dean and Associate Professor for Church Leadership Western Theological Seminary The faculty at Western Theological Seminary (WTS) in Holland, MI recently invested itself in Willie James Jennings’ book, The Christian Imagination: Theology and the Origins of Race (Yale University Press, 2010). Three faculty members were invited to take up Jennings' claim and call, and to generate a conversation in terms of how Jennings’ work intersects with our shared task of teaching and learning. I engaged as a pastoral theologian wondering what are the pedagogical implications if we accept Jennings' book, on his own... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Roger Nam Full disclosure: I struggle with the Korean language. Although I completed an M.Div. degree in Seoul, Korean is still a second language to me. Through an odd combination of reading Korean theology books and listening to 1990s K-pop, I have a decent, albeit strange, vocabulary. But my Korean sentence construction... Continue reading
Posted Oct 28, 2014 at Stories from the Front
Image
Marcia Y. Riggs, Ph.D. J. Erskine Love Professor of Christian Ethics Columbia Theological Seminary Why does an African American woman--a Womanist black liberationist religious ethicist-- in her right mind teach for twenty-three years in a historically white seminary in the South? I have asked myself this question many, many times, and most of those times in prayer on my knees to a God that I am sure is the “one that I have found in myself” and love fiercely (re: Ntozake Shange). There you have the answer: there is this call to teach that is the “fire in my bones”... Continue reading
Posted Oct 27, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom
Image
Nekeisha Alayna Alexis Coordinator Intercultural Competence and Undoing Racism Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary Safwat Marzouk Assistant Professor of Old Testament Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary Recent spates of lethal violence against people of color—and black men and women in particular— are devastating reminders of the high cost of unaddressed oppression. The race- and class-based killings of Mike Brown in Ferguson, Mo.; John Crawford in Beavercreek, Ohio; Eric Gardner in Staten Island, New York; and Renisha McBride in Dearborn Heights, Mich.; to name a few, undercut illusions of how close we are to a “post-racial” or just society. However, these tragedies must... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2014 at Race Matters in the Classroom