Religion Department

Vaughn Booker joins Religion faculty

Among the 35 new teacher-scholars who joined the Dartmouth faculty in 2017-2018 is Assistant Professor of Religion and of African and African American Studies Vaughn Booker '07 (Religion), who went on to receive his M. Div. from Harvard and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Princeton. In an article in Dartmouth News, Booker comments, "I am a scholar of religion, and my research focuses on African American religious history, primarily in the 20th-century United States. My current research project examines jazz musicians whose expressions of religious belief and representations of racial identity will greatly enhance our understandings of African American religious practices. Future projects will explore cultural practices of religious irreverence and interracial conversion efforts in African American life." This Winter Term (2018), he taught Rel. 61, "Religion and the Civil Rights Movement" (identical to AAAS 22), and next Fall Term he will be teaching Rel.

New visiting professor: Kijan Bloomfield

Kijan Bloomfield is a doctoral candidate in the Religion, Ethics, and Politics subfield at Princeton. Her reearch areas include African American religious thought, religion in the African Diaspora, global pentecostalism, and Caribbean philosophy. Her Ph.D. dissertion is an interdisciplinary project that explores the role of religious ethics in the history of social change in Jamaica from the late 19th century to the present. She is here at Dartmouth this Spring Term to teach Religion 19.25, Religions of the Caribbean (taught at the 11 hour), and Religion 19.26, Global Pentecostalism (10A). Both courses are open to all students. (Course syllabi may be viewed here.)

Martin Luther King, Jr., on "The False God of Nationalism"

In his essay "The False God of Nationalism: Americans Face a New Nationalism," in the New School of Social Research's Public Seminar, Assistant Professor of Religion and African & African-American Studies explores Martin Luther King, Jr.'s concern that he lived in an age where people had "turned away from the eternal God of the universe, and decided to worship at the shrine of the god of nationalism" and finds a similarity  with the "new nationalism that is likely to inhabit the government for at least four years." "The new nationalism," Booker observes, "shows no evidence of concern to thwart what King identified as the triple evils of poverty, militarism, and racism. Rather, it appears ready to benefit from all three."

New course: Religion & Social Struggle in the Americas

This Winter Term, Professor Jeremy Sabella will be teaching a new Religion course, Rel. 74.14, "Religion & Social Struggle in the Americas." This course examines twentieth and twenty-first century social struggles through a religious lens. Karl Marx described religion as the "opiate of the masses," but in practice, religion has been a resource for resistance as well as a mechanism of control. Drawing on case studies from the U.S. and Latin America. the course analyzes how both sides of a conflict understand and deploy religious concepts. How do those in power approach religion? How does this differ from how those outside power structures mobilize it? How do uses of religion evolve to accommodate different cultural contexts and new political circumstances? These are some of the questions the course will consider in preparation for analyzing contemporary movements such as Standing Rock and Black Lives Matter. Offered at the 2A Hour, and open to all classes.

Randall Balmer on evangelical Christianity's close ties to conservative politics

In an article on the Roy Moore scandal in the Salt Lake City, Utah, Deseret News, Religion Department chair Randall Balmer observes that "Evangelical Christianity's close ties to conservative politics are driving people away from the flock. People are looking for other labels to identify themselves with because they find the term 'evangelical' so fraught and associated with things they don't embrace."

"Money--Flat, Broad, and Deep"

Assistant Professor of Religion Devin Singh's article, "Money--Flat, Broad, and Deep," has been published in The Immanent Frame: Secularism, Religion, and the Public Sphere, which publishes interdisciplinary perspectives on religion, secularism, and the public sphere. Singh is currently on leave for the '17-'18 academic year, supported by a First Book Grant from the Louisville Institute, and will be a visiting scholar at Harvard Divinity School's Center for the Study of World Religions.

Faculty search: Tenure-Track Position in Asian Religions

DARTMOUTH COLLEGE, Hanover, New Hampshire. The Department of Religion at Dartmouth College invites applications for a full-time, tenure-track position in Asian Religions. Appointment to begin as early as July 1, 2018. We especially encourage applications from candidates who specialize in Japanese, Tibetan/Himalayan, or Southeast Asian religions, whose academic specialization lies in religion or in an academic discipline relating to the study of religion. The successful candidate will be grounded in both theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of religion, as well as the relevant primary languages.

Qualifications include Ph.D.,or ABD in their final year will also be considered, along with a record of outstanding scholarship and effective teaching. Requirements include teaching four courses per year (0-2 per quarter over 3 quarters) and normal department service. Competitive salary, benefits and research support. The successful candidate will be expected to teach a broad range of introductory, intermediate-level, and advanced courses within his or her specialization, as well as contributing to the Department’s theoretical and methodological offerings.

Susan Ackerman receives award for "outstanding teaching of undergraduates"

Congratulations to Susan Ackerman '80, Preston H. Kelsey Professor in Religion, who was just presented with the Elizabeth Howland Hand-Otis Norton Pierce Award for a Faculty Member Who is an Outstanding Teacher of Undergraduates by the Faculty of Arts & Sciences. Read more here.

Zahra Ayubi receives Dean of the Faculty Mentoring Award

Assistant Professor of Religion Zahra Ayubi was recently honored with a Dean of the Faculty Mentoring Award for 2016-2017 for her outstanding work as a mentor of Dartmouth students. The award is funded and supported by the Provost and the Mellon Foundation.

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