October 3, 2020

Open Theology invites submissions for the topical issue “Women and Gender in the Bible and the Biblical World II”, edited by Zanne Domoney-Lyttle and Sarah Nicholson. This special issue aims to explore, interrogate and reflect on the ways in which women are understood, contextualised and represented in the text of the Bible that has developed, in various ways, a foundational significance for Western culture. We welcome papers that could contribute to this discussion by addressing, for example, gendered relationships between… Read more

October 2, 2020

There are two new interviews with me that both feature me talking about Jesus. The focus of each is different. First, I spoke with Shirley Paulson for her podcast The Bible and Beyond, about my next book which will be published by Cascade: What Jesus Learned From Women. Have a listen: Sara Parks is one of several people who kindly read a draft of the manuscript for my book What Jesus Learned From Women and provided feedback on it. She wrote the… Read more

October 1, 2020

I took notes in the Traditions of Eastern Late Antiquity session focused on the Silk Road. I apologize for not sharing them sooner, but once again hope they may come at a time when other academics are dismayed at so many conferences being cancelled or shifted to online, that you may take some small comfort from being afforded a glimpse of a session you perhaps missed in San Diego. Before I move on to those papers let me draw attention… Read more

September 30, 2020

I’ve been interested in the religious themes of Tony Banks’ songs both as part of Genesis and on his solo albums for a long time, well before I began work on a book on theology and progressive rock. (Banks’ keyboard playing, as you may be aware, was what led me to take up the instrument). If there is a particular if unrealistic hope I have in connection with the book project, it is that an opportunity will arise to talk… Read more

September 29, 2020

I didn’t know the term psephology until I read the article “Psephology in Free Fall” a while back. Here is an excerpt that connects it with the Bible: Psephology comes from the Greek psephos, or pebble; in Athenian democracy, votes were cast by dropping black or white pebbles into ceramic urns. But that wasn’t the only thing the ancients did to their pebbles. The word has a dark twin, psephomancy, divination by pebbles, something far older and vaster, something it can never… Read more

September 28, 2020

Having wrapped up a number of other writing projects, I return my attention to two that lie at the intersection of religion and music: the Bible and music textbook and the book on theology and progressive rock. For a brief moment I wondered whether I still had anything to say on the topic. Then I listened again. To Genesis, Rush, and ELP. Songs incredibly familiar yet always invigorating to hear again. I listened to interviews as the musicians whose work… Read more

September 27, 2020

Call for Papers: The Image of Religion & Political Theology in Contemporary Pop Culture The highly popular and widely disseminated picture of a pregnant Beyoncé surrounded by flowers is a strong symbolic embodiment of a religious image and a political theological message. A black “Madonna” as the queen of music. It almost encapsulates her own words. “Who run the world” – “Beyoncé”. This pop cultural picturesque image reveals the high impact popular cultural messages can achieve with the use of religious forms… Read more

September 26, 2020

This call for papers came to my attention via Jack Hunter through a Facebook group: Partly inspired by my son’s lockdown viewing, I am currently considering putting together an edited collection on Scooby Doo and the Paranormal. Here’s some of my thinking, and some of the themes the book would be exploring: Mystery Inc. first scrambled across our television screens – likely pursued by some kind of ghoul, monster, ghost, or creep – on September 13th 1969. In the intervening 50… Read more

September 25, 2020

I am delighted to share another episode of the ReligionProf Podcast, featuring as my special guests the team of filmmakers behind the new movie Hosea: Producers Avril Z. Speaks and Suzanne Watson and writer/director Ryan Daniel Dobson. The film explores how the story of Hosea and Gomer in the Bible might unfold in a modern-day setting, and told from the female protagonist’s perspective. It is a powerful and provocative movie that you’ll want to see, and once you’ve done so… Read more

September 24, 2020

As I recently mentioned, I have now completed my endeavor to blog my way through every episode of classic Doctor Who. I have also blogged extensively about the more recent series and will work on collecting those links and seeing whether there are any episodes that I failed to blog about over the years, with a view to rectifying such oversights. The links below each takes you to a list of blog posts organized by the titles of episodes listed… Read more

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