Teaching Ferguson

As many of us head back to school, events are still unfolding in Ferguson, Missouri.  Protests have been expanding since white police officer Darren Wilson fatally shot unarmed teenager Michael Brown on August 9.  Some young people will know what has been going on, and some will not.  Some will relate to the anger playing [Read More...]

At the Intersections: Home, Hope, & Gaza

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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 Fatima Alshantti, who was a student in my Women in Islam class last spring.  She is a sophomore majoring in Biology-Pre Nursing at Illinois College. She is a graduate of [Read More...]

Summer Shelfie

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Last week, I shared a few reflections on two books that started my summer reading list.  I also offered a list of suggestions for a feminist theological summer education.  Here, then, is the rest of one pile of books awaiting my attention. Summer = Reading. [Read more...]

Your Summer (Feminist) (Theological) Reading List

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I received an email query this weekend that read, in part: I’m looking for some guidance as to what an almost Lutheran pastor with a strong feminist heart should read to grow my understanding of feminism and feminist theology. Here is my response: What a lovely description, “a strong feminist heart.”  Because that is surely [Read More...]

Beyonce Studies 2014

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Jessica Valenti called Beyoncé’s recent self-titled release “the album that is going to launch a thousand women’s studies papers.”  I don’t know how many papers have been written so far, but I do know that the timing couldn’t have been better for my teaching theory in gender and women’s studies this spring.  There’s even an [Read More...]

Quran, Gender, Equality: A Twitterview with Amina Wadud

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Earlier this week I wrote about Scott Kugle’s book Homosexuality in Islam, and how it was the work of Amina Wadud that prompted questions leading me and my students to that book.  Here is the Twitter exchange I had with Wadud earlier last month in which she answers the question about whether heteronormativity is established [Read More...]

A Paradox of Religion & Tradition: Homosexuality in Islam

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“So, what about gay and lesbian Muslims?” The last time I taught my course on Women in Islam, we were working through Amina Wadud’s argument in Quran and Woman that equality has both cosmological and eschatological grounding in the Quran and in Islam when a student asked this question.  It was in response to Wadud’s [Read More...]

Moving Justice Forward: VDay 2014?

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Rehearsals for The Vagina Monologues have begun on my campus again this year and I have a lot of jumbled thoughts and reactions to taking the stage with students once again.  Things I want the students to know, things I want the world to know, things I want to remember. When the brave first group [Read More...]

Vocation Winter Camp

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“It’s always hard when your parents have one vocation for you and you find that you have another.” I’m pretty sure that the shuttle van driver who took me back to the Grand Rapids airport last summer had no idea how perfectly his comment fit with everything I had been reading, writing, and talking about [Read More...]

Talking Interfaith Studies

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Note: Due to the winter storm, I wasn’t actually able to travel to this conference! I wanted to share about it anyway: The longer I teach religion, the more intentional I become about teaching religions.  It’s not enough for any of us to know about only one religion. Religious literacy (or illiteracy as the case [Read More...]


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