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A Recent Book Review in Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries

In the summer of 2010, Seattle Pacific University hosted a Summer Seminar, which is a four-week program sponsored by the Lilly Fellows Program in Humanities and the Arts.  You can read more about Summer Seminars here.  The idea is to bring together a small group faculty from the LFP network for an intensive period of time to develop their research around a certain theme.  The Seattle Pacific University Summer Seminar focused on Gender and Christianity. The result of their time and work is the edited collection Sex, Gender, and Christianity, Priscilla Pope-Levison and John R. Levison, eds.  The book, which was published in 2012, was recently reviewed in Choice.

I like the line in the review: “Classrooms will surely come alive with this little volume; a relevant student-centered education is elegantly unified with essays that have scholarly integrity.”

Sex, Gender, and Christianity, ed. by Priscilla Pope-Levison and John R. Levison. Cascade Books, 2012. 250p bibl index ISBN 1620320150 pbk, $29.00; ISBN 9781620320150 pbk, $29.00. Reviewed in 2013 June CHOICE.

Emerging from the 2010 Lilly Fellows Summer Seminar on Gender and Christianity, this volume gathers provocative and stimulating essays designed to open safe space for conversation about gender and sexuality in the lives of college students, for whom enduring models of patriarchal authority continue to be pitted against progressive forms of feminism. The contributors find creative and indirect methods to open this impasse, which include novel interpretations of a surprisingly wide range of historical texts that depolarize the perennial gender debate in innovative ways. For example, John Levison (Seattle Pacific Univ.) examines the pseudepigraphal Greek Life of Adam and Eve, and discovers an Eve who communicates sympathy, initiative, and autonomy. Mikee Delony (Abilene Christian Univ.) extols the outspoken, feisty life of the unruly wife of Bath in Chaucer’s 14th-century Canterbury Tales. James G. Dixon III (Grove City College) explores the discussion about whether William Shakespeare’s plays reinscribe traditional views of marriage or whether they support “new” (16th-17th century) egalitarian models of marriage based on compatibility and choice. Classrooms will surely come alive with this little volume; a relevant student-centered education is elegantly unified with essays that have scholarly integrity. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers. — P. K. Steinfeld, Buena Vista University


By Mary Beth Fraser Connolly

A Lutheran Vocation: A Cross Post from Feminismxianity

We have a been a little quiet around the Exiles from Eden blog.  Possibly we have all gone fishing for the summer?  Well, if this post from Caryn Riswold over at Feminismxianity will get us back into the blogging, I don’t know what will.  Caryn will be attending the Vocation of a Lutheran College Conference this week which will focus on “Vocation: A Challenge to the Commodification of Education.”  The conference

will explore the uniqueness and value of education for/as vocation in a climate where profitability, careerism, and the commodification of education increasingly dictate expectations of students, pedagogical practices, and institutional decisions. We will also offer opportunities for participants to orient themselves to the idea of “the vocation of a Lutheran college” if they are new to this ongoing conversation.

I bet Caryn will post an update on her experiences. I know I will be following her on Patheos and Twitter to find out.  Will you?

By Mary Beth Fraser Connolly

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