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At the Intersections: The Sacred Feminine, Medieval Style

Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Lisa Deam, scholar of art and the history of the middle ages.  I met Lisa when we were both postdoctoral fellows in the Lilly Fellows Program in Humanities and the Arts, engaged in regular and vibrant conversation about vocation, scholarship, teaching, and learning.  These days, Lisa works to make medieval spirituality relevant to life in the twent … [Read More...]

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How Should People of Faith Respond to Bruce Jenner?

As Bruce Jenner prepares to tell some of his story in an interview with Diane Sawyer, I find myself intrigued and terrified.  Intrigued to hear how he tells it.  Terrified of the hateful mockery that is likely to continue and intensify.On that front, I am reminded of what LZ Granderson wrote a few months ago: “When Jenner does speak, I hope we resist the urge to mock. If not for his sake, then for the sake of the countless others who may be able to identify with what Jenner says. According t … [Read More...]

Rites of Passage: Sabbatical as Sabbath

The first spring I spent in Chicago after two years of living in southern California was magical. Do you know how brilliant the first green grass is after a long snowy winter? Having grown up in South Dakota I was and am intimately familiar with dramatic season changes.  But something about having been out of that rhythm for the two years of graduate school in sunny Claremont let me forget what a … [Read More...]

Christian Privilege & the Religion Professor

Today is Better Together Day!  The designation comes from the Interfaith Youth Core, lifting up the day to encourage more people to have one conversation with a person of a different religious or non-religious background.  It’s an effort to combat some of the basic ignorance about other religious views that pervades our culture, and religious tension that permeates the globe: “That’s why, on April … [Read More...]

When Religious Freedom Only Protects Heteropatriarchy

It’s not really religious freedom.Conservative politicians have been on a roll for the past couple of years coopting the idea of religious freedom, itself an important element of our pluralistic democracy.  The version they are trumpeting and carving into law, however, is anything but religious, free, pluralistic, or democratic.  Indiana’s new law is only the most recent example of what has bee … [Read More...]

Vocation at the Intersection of Self & World

Today I’m heading to St. Louis for the National Conference of the Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education, NetVUE.  I’m particularly excited to hear Krista Tippett speak at one of the plenary sessions, she of the On Being podcast, radio show, blog, and general fabulousness.  I have written before about this conference, and my participation over the past two years in a collaborative group of … [Read More...]

At the Intersections: A Quota of Home, A Colonized Name

Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Nisreen Zaqout, who is a junior at Illinois College majoring in Gender and Women's Studies and Economics. After graduating, she plans to work on a graduate degree in Gender Studies focusing on the Middle East. Nisreen wants to pursue a career that en … [Read More...]

At the Intersections: A Quota of Home, A Colonized Name

Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Nisreen Zaqout, who is a junior at Illinois College majoring in Gender and Women's Studies and Economics. After graduating, she plans to work on a graduate degree in Gender Studies focusing on the Middle East. Nisreen wants to pursue a career that en … [Read More...]

At the Intersections: I Remember

Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Leah Fortner, who is a senior at Illinois College with a major in Psychology and a minor in Gender & Women’s Studies. She plans to move to Oregon and become a Child & Family Psychologist after graduation and currently spends most of her time … [Read More...]

At the Intersections: On Being Black and Queer at a Black Baptist Church

Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Brittany Spaulding, a Chicagoan who will graduate from Illinois College this May.  Brittany looks forward to starting work on her MFA in Poetry at Columbia College Chicago in the fall.  She is a Chihuahua enthusiast. When she’s not writing poetry, Br … [Read More...]

Feminist Theology of the Cross and the Eucharist

My first book, Coram Deo: Human Life in the Vision of God (Pickwick 2006), is newly available for Kindle starting this week.  It originated as my dissertation at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.  Here’s an excerpt: A commitment to feminist theological criticism grounds what I identify to be the problem of atonement as it presumes and presents and understanding of the relationship bet … [Read More...]

A Feminist Religion Professor’s Valentine’s Weekend

What’s a great way to spend a heteronormative greeting-card holiday? At conference for gay and lesbian college student activists? Yesss! A couple of years ago, it so happened that I was teaching an essay by bell hooks on the patriarchal construct of romantic love on February 14. A key idea in "Romance: Sweet Love" is that the phrase "falling in love" is a big part of the problem. It seemed pretty a … [Read More...]


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