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MemberJordan Rosenblum

My research focuses on the literature, law, and social history of the rabbinic movement. In particular, I am interested in how rabbinic food regulations enact and maintain distinct identities. I have just published a new book entitled Rabbinic Drinking: What Beverages Teach Us About Rabbinic Literature (University of California Press, 2020) and a co-edited volume entitled Feasting and Fasting: The History and Ethics of Jewish Food (New York University Press, 2019).

MemberChris Greenough

I am currently Senior Lecturer in Theology and Religion at Edge Hill University. I gained my PhD in Theology and Religion from the University of Birmingham in 2016 and my Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching in Higher Education from Edge Hill University in 2019. I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. I am an external member of Sheffield Institute of Interdisciplinary Biblical Studies and on the editorial board of the Journal of Interdisciplinary Biblical Studies.  

MemberHussein Rashid

Hussein Rashid, PhD, is founder of islamicate, L3C, a consultancy focusing on religious literacy and cultural competency. He works with a variety of NGOs, foundations, non-profits, and governmental agencies for content expertise on religion broadly, with a specialization on Islam. His work includes exploring theology, the interaction between culture and religion, and the role of the arts in conflict mediation. Hussein has a BA in Middle Eastern Studies from Columbia University, a Masters in Theological Studies focusing on Islam, and an MA and PhD in Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, focusing on South and Central Asia from Harvard University. He is a contingent faculty member and has taught at Hofstra University, Fordham University, Iona College, Virginia Theological Seminary, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, SUNY Old Westbury, Barnard College, Columbia University, and The New School. His research focuses on Muslims and American popular culture. He writes and speaks about music, comics, movies, and the blogistan. He also has a background in South and Central Asian studies, with a deep interest in Shi’i justice theology. He has published academic works on Muslims and American Popular Culture, Malcolm X, qawwali, intra-Muslim racism, teaching Shi’ism, Islam and comics, free speech, Sikhs and Islamophobia, Muslims in film, and American Muslim spaces of worship. His current project focuses on the role of technology in teaching religion. He is a fellow with The Ariane de Rothschild Fellowship in Social Entrepreneurship, the American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute, and the Truman National Security Project. He was a fellow at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, and a term member on the Council of Foreign Relations. He is on the advisory boards of The Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art (Building Bridges Program), Sacred Matters, Anikaya Dance Theater, the Tanenbaum Center, and Al-Rawiya. He served on the advisory board of Project Interfaith, Everplans, Intersections International, Deily, and the British Council’s Our Shared Future Program. He is currently working with the Children’s Museum of Manhattan as a content expert. He was on the editorial boards of Religion Dispatches, The Islamic Monthly, and Cyber Orient, in addition to being an emeritus scholar at State of Formation. Hussein appears on mainstream media, including CNN, Channel 4 (UK),  Al-Jazeera America, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and has published at On Faith (Washington Post), Belief Blog (CNN), On Being (NPR), The Revealer, and as a contributor to Religion News Service.

MemberCarmen Celestini

My research is predominately in the field religion and social theory, specifically in the field of improvisational conspiracy, the overlapping belief systems of apocalyptic Christian thought and conspiracy theories, and the impact of these beliefs on the American political system. In my doctoral work, my focus has been on the John Birch Society of the 1950s and 1960s and how their form of improvisational conspiracism is linked to contemporary right-wing mobilization. I also have an interest in religion and pop culture, specifically within subversive or marginalized religious movements.

MemberMatthew Averett

Matthew Knox Averett is Associate Professor of Art History at Creighton University.  His recent publications include “’Redditus Orbis Erat’: The Political Rhetoric of Bernini’s Fountains in Piazza Barberini” in the Sixteenth Century Journal (2014) and “The Annual Medals of Pope Urban VIII Barberini” in the American Journal of Numismatics (2013).  Dr. Averett edited and contributed to a collection of essays entitled The Early Modern Child in Art and History, which was published by Taylor & Francis in 2015.  Dr. Averett is currently completing work on a book on Bernini’s Triton Fountain and the artistic patronage of Pope Urban VIII.

MemberAntonio Sotomayor

I am an Associate Professor, Historian, and Librarian of Latin American and Caribbean Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I also hold faculty appointments in the Departments of Spanish and Portuguese, and Recreation, Sport, and Tourism, and I am an affiliated faculty at the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies at Illinois. My research revolves around issues of idenity/cultural politics, nationalism, international relations, religion, hegemony, and U.S.-Latin American relations through the window of sport. My book, The Sovereign Colony: Olympic Sport, National Identity, and International Politics in Puerto Rico, studies the role that the Olympic movement played in Puerto Rican construction of national identity, in the development of an autonomist political culture, and in Puerto Rican agency in international politics. It was the recipient of the 2017 José Toribio Medina Award, from the Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials (SALALM), the premier international association for Latin American librarians. My work appears in journals such as Journal of Sport HistoryCaribbean Studies, The Latin Americanist, The Americas, and The International Journal of the History of Sport. Currently, I am co-editor of Olimpismo The Olympic Movement in the Making of Latin America and the Caribbean (Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 2020). I am working on a book project on religion, imperialism, and sport through the YMCA in Puerto Rico and Cuba (1898-1950s). As a librarian, I direct the Latin American and Caribbean Studies collection at the University of Illinois. With close to one million volumes and numerous specialized databases, the collection is considered among the best in the nation. I oversee all aspects related to Latin America and the Caribbean at the University Library including collection development, reference, instruction, serial management, and offer specialized research consultations. My main interests at the library include in depth research consultations, collection development, and liaison work with the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies and the Lemann Institute for Brazilian Studies. I am the director of the Digital Library of Latin American and Caribbean Sport (DLLACS), and on the Conde de Montemar Letters, a portal that provides open access to a set of some 300 unique letters belonging to the family of the Count of Montemar between Lima and Madrid during the years of 1761 and 1799.

MemberSean Burrus

Currently the Bothmer Fellow in Greek and Roman Art at the Metropolitan Museum, my research explores the role that material and visual culture played in the Jewish experience of the late ancient Roman world. I received my B.A. in Ancient Mediterranean Religions from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (2008), and went on to study at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem before receiving an M.A. (2012) and Ph.D. (2017) in the History of Judaism from Duke University. I am an experienced instructor in Hebrew Bible and Jewish history from the Israelite period to Late Antiquity with an emphasis on the Greco-Roman World. I also have expertise in material and visual culture, archaeology and anthropology. I have archaeological field experience from important Roman period sites in Israel, and am a member of the publication team for the Duke excavations at Sepphoris. My dissertation research involved several enjoyable summers on site documenting and photographing in Rome and Beth She’arim. Having concluding my current research on Jewish sarcophagus patrons, I have begun work on a monograph more broadly exploring additional media of Jewish visual culture in Late Antiquity as evidence of cultural interaction and change. I am also developing a digital project that seeks to virtually reconstruct and reopen the destroyed Jewish catacombs of Monteverde.