MemberJames Walters

…Bible Series. Piscataway, NJ: Gorgias Press, 2013.

Ephrem the Syrian’s Hymns on the Unleavened Bread. Texts from Christian Late Antiquity 30. Piscataway, NJ: Gorgias Press, 2011.


I teach courses on biblical studies and early Christianity at Rochester University in Michigan. My research is primarily focused on the early Syriac traditions of Christianity, particularly the spread of Christianity within the Persian Empire. More broadly, I am also interested in the reception and transmission of Scripture, Jewish-Christian relations, and post-Chalcedonian Christological disputes.

MemberAdrienne Krone

… Veganism and Vegetarianism SUNY Press (Under Review)

Entries on “Augusta Evans Wilson,” “Bread for the World,” “Eliza Agnew,” “Helen Gates Starr,” “Katherine Womeldorf Paterson…

I research religious food justice movements and teach courses in Jewish studies, food studies, environmental studies, and women’s, gender, and sexuality studies. My current project is an ethnographic and historical study of the Jewish Community Farming movement in North America.

MemberKeerthi Purushothaman

My MA dissertation was on understanding a particular kind of urban space within Chennai, India, which falls at the intersection of legal pluralism (porosity of land tenure), religiosity (temple-owned land), and public policy (intersecting governance institutions). My broad research interests include urban sociology, land governance, public housing, legal pluralism, and urban sustainability. Having graduated from an interdisciplinary five-year integrated course, my research interests have varied throughout the years. Being exposed to literature from different disciplines without its rigid boundaries has helped me read them in relation to each other. I am also interested in reading philosophy, economic history, poetry, gender theory, and disability studies.

MemberPaul Ilie

I am a maverick scholar and literary critic who, despite academic habits and values ingrained during the 1950s, also lives a non-specialist second life by reading across the humanities, sciences, and political history. I relish analytically disputing issues with other introspective, driven readers of Western literature and lovers of art and classical music. If the topic is broad, I demand supportive detail, and if narrow, I want to understand the wider context. To make sense of it all and to air occasional exasperations, I also write short stories. You can google my name for a professional profile.

MemberErin J. Kappeler

I am an assistant professor of English at Tulane University, where I teach courses in transnational modernism, poetry and poetics, and nineteenth- and twentieth-century American literature. My current book project, The Secret History of Free Verse: American Prosody and Poetics 1880–1933, is the first historical account of free verse as a race-based construction. Extant scholarship positions free verse as an American effort to revitalize a dying art in an era of simplistic, repetitive Victorian poetry. I show instead that the intellectual origins of free verse lie in attempts to allay fears about the future of white American identity. My research methods draw from historical poetics, a field of study that examines poetic forms, genres, and theories in their social and political contexts in order to better understand the historically specific cultural work poems have performed. My particular methodology in this project has been to scour the journals, literary magazines, and poetry anthologies of the time in order to demonstrate the influence of the newly institutionalized fields of ethnology and anthropology on the poetry and criticism of the late nineteenth century. Under this influence, critics and academics promoted free verse as an expression of the (white) American race they imagined was emerging in the New World. My research identifies the fundamental but, until now, neglected connections between prosodic theories of free verse and constructions of American whiteness, and shows how these discourses shaped popular and academic understandings of African-American and Native American poetry. The Secret History of Free Verse offers new readings of key American authors and publications, including Walt Whitman, James Weldon Johnson, and Harriet Monroe’s Poetry magazine, and breaks new ground by reconceptualizing the role that poetry has played in circulating ideas about racial and national identity to a broad reading public. I have also received funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Massachusetts Historical Society for a planned second book, Everyday Laureates: Community Poetry in New England 1865-1900, which explores the reading practices of amateur poetry societies.