Professor Wil Gafney (Brite Divinity School) provides a short talk on light and darkness in the Bible, and its employment as a basis for White Supremacist interpretations of the Bible.
On August 4, 2020, Dr Fatima Tofighi (University of Religions, Qom) and Prof James Crossley discussed “Paul and the Construction of the European Self”.
The discussion is the 13th in the Centre for the Social-Scientific Study of the Bible’s 2020 Online Discussion Series.
On April 18, 2019, Dr Nyasha Junior presented “Black Like Me: Representations of Biblical Hagar” in the University of Iowa’s Spring 2019 Classics Colloquium series.
Her talk begins at 4:25.
On May 25, 2018, The Centre for the Social-Scientific Study of the Bible at St Mary’s University, Twickenham held a one-day seminar, “Social-Scientific Criticism and Christian Origins: Past, Present and Future”.
‘Social-Scientific Criticism’ now serves in New Testament studies as an umbrella term for a variety of critical approaches to early Christianity, which include cultural anthropology, social identity theory, social history, ancient and modern media studies, memory theories, human geography, ancient and modern politics, race theory, trauma studies, and others. This conference gathers leading scholars to answer that question and track the progress of the scholarly discourse from initial applications to the current state of the discussion, as well as offer thoughts about the future.
9.10-9.20am Introduction to the Conference
Session 1 Theoretical Origins and Texts
9.20-9.50am ‘From Honour and Shame to Theorizing Christian Origins’
9.50-10.20am ‘Competitive Textualisation in the Jesus Tradition’
10.20-10.50am ‘The Letter to Titus as a Site of Memory’
Michael Scott Robertson
Session 2 Violence and Identity
11.20am-12.10pm ‘Violence as Social Currency in Early Christianity’
12.10-12.40pm ‘The Death of John the Baptist and the Sociology of Beheading in the Ancient World’
Session 3 Space and Language
2-2.40pm ‘Diverse Futures of Social-Scientific Criticism of the New Testament: Affective, Spatial, Cognitive and Digital Turns’
Louise J. Lawrence
2.40-3.20pm ‘Apocalyptic Language in the New Testament: Can Cognitive Linguistics Help?’
Session 4 Ethnicity, Race and Ideology
3.40-4.10pm ‘Whose Race Needs to be Noted? Further Reflections on Whiteness and Biblical Studies’
4.40-5.10pm ‘Social-Scientific Criticism and the Bible: Investigating Ideological Trends’
Session 5 Politics and Social-Scientific Criticism
5.30-6pm Keynote Address: ‘Cults, Martyrs, and Good Samaritans’
6-6.20pm Respondent: Hannah Strømmen
6.20-6.40pm Respondent: Yvonne Sherwood
THE BIBLE IN POLITICS
2-3 June, 2017
The Bible in Politics conference was held earlier this month at St Mary’s University, Twickenham, London. St Mary’s has made the videos of the presentations available on their YouTube channel.
Friday 2 June
10.30-11.15am Hugh Pyper, ‘“Don’t Mention the Bible! Religion, Identity and Contemporary Scottish Politics’
11.15-12.00 Christina Petterson, ‘The Politics of Biblical Translation’
12.15-1pm Fatima Tofighi, ‘Paul, the Mystic Who Wasn’t a Mystic: A Reexamination in Light of the Politics of Religious Scholarship’
2.05-2.50pm Tarcisius Mukaka, ‘“Let Every Person be Subject to the Governing Authorities”: Reading Rom. 13.1-7 against the Grain, or a Postcolonial Reading’
3-3.45pm Jo Carruthers, ‘The Bible, Aesthetics and the Origins of the American Self: Islamophobia and Protestant Aesthetics in Homeland’
4-4.30pm Taylor Weaver, ‘Trump’s Bible: Weakening Relevance in the American Political Sphere’
4.30-5pm Chris Meredith, ‘The Bible and the Poetics of Modern Militarism: The Good Samaritan and the UK’s 2016 Airstrikes in Syria’
Saturday 3 June
10-11.15am Erin Runions, ‘Carceral Technologies, Religious Affects, and US Theopolitics’
11.30am-12.15pm Lesleigh Cushing, ‘The “Good Book” in the “Promised Land”: The Bible in Contemporary American Politics’
12.15-1pm David Tollerton, ‘Alternative Facts from the Whirlwind: Zvyagintsev’s Leviathan and the Obfuscating Oppression of the Divine/State’
2.15-3pm Robert Myles, ‘Fishing for Entrepreneurs in the Sea of Galilee’
3-4pm or so James Crossley, ‘Italian Politics, Italian Westerns…and the Bible’
Ward Blanton, “Apostle of the Self-Help Entrepreneurs?”
On February 11, 2016, at Yale Divinity School, Professor Fernando Segovia (Vanderbilt Divinity School) delivered a lecture on biblical criticism in the emerging world system, one in which the West will no longer dominate. His lecture, entitled “Toward Biblical Criticism as Global-Systemic: Analyzing the Global Framework as Departure”, was held at Yale Divinity School.
On February 4, 2016, Professor Nyasha Junior (Temple University) delivered a talk at Rowan University College of Humanities and Social Sciences entitled “Beyoncé, Black Women, and the Bible”, which outlines her approach to Womanist Biblical Interpretation. Junior is the author of An Introduction to Womanist Biblical Interpretation (Westminster John Knox, 2015), and her talk is largely based on this book.
African-American women have a complex relationship to feminism, which has often focused on the concerns of affluent, White women. Some African-American women choose to identify themselves and their scholarship as womanist, drawing on Alice Walker’s 1983 definition of the term. Based on her recently published book An Introduction to Womanist Biblical Interpretation (Westminster John Knox 2015), Dr. Nyasha Junior will discuss how scholars use womanist approaches within biblical studies. She will explain how womanist biblical interpretation is related to feminist biblical interpretation and also deeply rooted in the work of previous generations of African-American women interpreters of the Bible.
Professor Amy-Jill Levine (Vanderbilt Divinity School) delivered the 42nd Annual Antoinette Brown lecture on March 31, 2016, at Benton Chapel, Vanderbilt University Divinity School. The lecture also celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Carpenter Program in Religion, Gender, and Sexuality.
Levine’s lecture was entitled “The Carpenter, Gender, and Sexuality: The Use and Abuse of the Gospels in Politics and Piety”. Her lecture looks at what the Bible teaches about rape, adultery, and women’s sexual pleasure. She also discusses the contemporary deployment of the Bible as a weapon: contemporary interpretations of the Bible which result in people dying, such as condemnations of homosexuality and abortion, and domestic abuse. Lastly, she examines the roles and authority of women in the Bible.
The lecture begins at 9:00.
Columbia Theological Seminary announced that it will livestream its upcoming conference on Bible, Empire, and Reception History during November 18-19. The Bible, Empire, and Reception History conference will explore the production and use of the Bible in various historical and geographic contexts of empire. It will consider the use of postcolonial criticism in interpreting biblical texts and its implications in modern contexts.
– Columbia Connections
8:30-9:00, Wednesday, November 18
Welcome, Introductions and Key Issues
9:00-12:30, Wednesday, November 18
Session # 1. The Bible and Ancient Empires
Keynote Speakers: Carol A. Newsom and Richard Horsley
Respondents: Warren Carter and Esther Menn
Panelists: Christine Yoder (Presider), Stephen Moore, Brent Strawn, Eric Barreto
2:00-5:30, Wednesday, November 18
Session # 2. The Bible, Empire, and the Americas
Keynote Speakers: Yvonne Sherwood and Jaime Lara
Respondents: Fernando Segovia and Rhondda Robinson Thomas
Panelists: Brennan Breed (Presider), Ana T. Valdez, Dianne Stewart, Gregory Cuéllar
9:00-12:30, Thursday, November 19
Session # 3. The Bible, Empire, and Asia
Keynote Speakers: Kwok Pui-Lan and Mitri Raheb
Respondents: Tat-Siong Benny Liew and Mrinalini Sebastian
Panelists: Raj Nadella (Presider), Jin Young Choi, Uriah Kim, Haruko Ward
2:00-5:30, Thursday, November 19
Session # 4. The Bible, Empire, and Africa
Keynote Speakers: Musa Dube and Hendrik Bosman
Respondents: Dora Mbuwayesango and Sarojini Nadar
Panelists: Emmanuel Lartey (Presider), Temba Mafico, Safwat Marzouk, Madipoane Masenya
Columbia have also made available videos of the conference presentations.
On March 26, 2015, Professor Emerson Powery (Mercy College) delivered the Jane D. Schaberg lecture in Scripture Studies, as a part of the 2015 Cushing Distinguished Lecture series at University of Detroit Mercy. His lecture discusses the origins of whiteness in slave narratives and the interpretation of the “Curse of Ham” narrative.
“The Origins of Whiteness and the Black (Biblical) Imagination: The Bible and the Slave Narrative”
Professor Musa Dube (University of Botswana) delivered three seminars at the 2012 Nida School of Translation Studies, May 20 – June 2, 2012, at the San Pellegrino University Foundation in Misano Adriatico (Rimini), Italy.
Videos from the seminars were made available by Fondazione San Pellegrino.
Session 21 (4 parts)
Session 29 (3 parts)
Session 37 (3 parts)
Musa Dube, a feminist postcolonial biblical scholar has a professorship at University of Botswana and has recently completed two visiting scholar appointments at Union Theological Seminary (NYC) and University of Bamberg (Germany). Dube’s research and publications are extensive, including numerous articles, chapters, and books. Her Postcolonial Feminist Interpretations of the Bible (2000) and The Bible in Africa; Transactions, Trajectories and Trends (co-edited with Gerald West, 2001) are just two examples of her important contributions in the area of biblical studies. Her social engagement is evident from her publications: HIV/AIDS and the Curriculum: Methods of Integrating HIV/AIDS in Theological Education (2003) and Grant Me Justice: HIV/AIDS and Gender Readings of the Bible (2004). More recently, Dube has written and taught on “Politics of Bible Translations: A Postcolonial Feminist Analysis.”
James Crossley interviews Robert Myles, author of The Homeless Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2014), and Michael Sandford, author of Poverty, Wealth, and Empire: Jesus and Postcolonial Criticism (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2014). In addition to discussing their latest books, the interview covers issues of class, postcolonialism, and biblical scholarship.
Professor M. Daniel Carroll, of Denver Seminary, delivers the Old Testament lectures for the 2013 Nils W. Lund Memorial Lecture series, on September 26, 2013, at North Park Theological Seminary:
Lecture 1: “Once a Stranger, Always a Stranger: Immigration, Assimilation, and the Book of Ruth”
Lecture 2: “Probing the Prophets for Social Ethics: Insights from Multiple Perspectives — The Case of Amos”
Dr. Tat-siong Benny Liew delivers a lecture entitled “Guess Who’s Coming to Discourse? Thoughts on a More Hospitable Theological Education”, on the issue of race and academia. The lecture was delivered at the inauguration of Dr. Kah-Jin Jeffrey Kuan as the seventh President of Claremont School of Theology, on October 23, 2013.
Dr. Liew’s lecture begins at 11:30 in the video.
A close friend of President Kuan, Dr. Liew is currently the Class of 1956 Professor in New Testament Studies at the Department of Religious Studies, College of the Holy Cross (Worcester, MA). Before teaching at Holy Cross, Liew taught at Chicago Theological Seminary and Pacific School of Religion/Graduate Theological Union. He is the author of Politics of Parousia: Reading Mark Inter(Con)textually (1999) and What is Asian American Biblical Interpretation? Reading the New Testament (2008). Liew has also edited The Bible in Asian America (with Gale Yee, 2002), Postcolonial Interventions (2009), They Were All Together in One Place? (with Randall Bailey and Fernando Segovia, 2009), Reading Ideologies (2011). He is also currently serving as the series editor of the Phoenix Guides to the New Testament and executive editor of the journal Biblical Interpretation (Brill). Born and raised in Hong Kong, Professor Liew is most interested and invested in reading and studying the New Testament across various academic disciplines.
Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza discusses the use of the language of Empire in Christian scriptures, in a 2007 Burke Lecture, against the backdrop of modern globalization and U.S. empire.
Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza of the Harvard Divinity School has done pioneering work in biblical interpretation and feminist theology. She explores how the power of empire has historically shaped Christian Scriptures but also how it continues to shape our self-understanding and public discourse in the present.