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Monthly Archives: December 2011

Review of Patrick S. Cheng. Radical Love: An Introduction to Queer Theology (New York: Seabury Press, 2011), pp. 162. & Susannah Cornwall. Controversies in Queer Theology (London: SCM, 2011), pp. 294.

December 31st, 2011|

In Radical Love: An Introduction to Queer Theology Patrick Cheng has created for us all a very valuable resource for teaching. He has put together a comprehensive historical survey of the way in which queer theology has developed and through the use of the ecumenical creeds devised a method of examining the major advances in theology that have been enabled by this particular contextual theology. Those creeds that have stood for narrow and exclusive boundaries and dry traditional ways of believing have in this book come alive through being told via the lives of queer people. Dare one say these creeds are redeemed! Radical Love offers useful and provocative questions at the end of each chapter, which focus the mind of the reader and highlight the ways in which queer theology has developed its own path and challenged traditional theologies.

The Power of Words, The Power of the Classroom

December 29th, 2011|

I am a scholar of religion that spends much of her teaching and research looking at the intersection of identity and religion. Whether it is race, class, culture, or gender, the manner in which religion shapes and contests identity construction has challenged my intellectual imagination since I was an undergraduate much like the very students I try to inspire and engage in the classroom.

Imagining Santa: Washington Irving and the Development of the American Tradition of Christmas

December 24th, 2011|

Santa Claus and the way we celebrate Christmas was imported from British tradition by an American author; namely, in the work of Washington Irving. Irving’s description of Santa included in Irving’s History of New York (1809), and his description of Christmas traditions in England in The Sketchbook of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. (published serially between 1819 and 1820), have greatly influenced the way we apprehend the holiday;before Irving’s work came out, Christmas was not generally celebrated in the new United States of America.

Review of Graham Huggan and Ian Law, ed. Racism, Postcolonialism, Europe (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2009), pp. 256.

December 7th, 2011|

The collection of essays in this volume resulted from the “Racism/Postcolonialism/Europe” conference held at the University of Leeds, in 2006. Transdisciplinary in its methods, postcolonial studies are applied to historical, sociological, and political surveys. Continental European debates on race and racism reveal the importance of postcolonial studies, critical studies on race, and black feminist studies; particularly, within East European Countries (Romania), continental cases (Spain, France, Germany), and the UK. The collection contains discussions on (1) the German debate regarding Turkey’s inclusion in the EU, (2) post-2005 English paranoia towards multiculturalism, (3) Islamophobia and the public humiliation of minorities in the Netherlands and (4) post-republicanism in France, all of which are treated with a broad outlook placing emphases on racial ideologies central to the construction of both European nation-states and Europe. Finally, this collection deals with anti-Semitism, anti-Gypsism, and racism against migrants.