The UChicago Theology Workshop

You are invited to our first meeting of the quarter co-sponsored with the Global Christianities workshop:  Thursday, April 2, noon- 1:20 pm at Swift 200.  

Elsa Marty (Ph.D. student, Theology) will present her paper entitled The Nemha Bible: Christians and Censorship in India

Delicious lunch will be served.


India’s laws that infringe on freedom of expression enjoy widespread support in the country. Many people believe they have a right to not be offended. Christians are no exception, demanding that the government ban The Da Vinci Code, bringing blasphemy cases against miracle debunker Sanal Edamaruku, and protesting the use of the word Hosanna in a Bollywood song. But Christians have also been the victims of these laws. In 2008, followers of a traditional tribal religion called Sarna objected to a translation of the Bible into their language, because they interpreted a passage from the book of Deuteronomy as a call for the destruction of their religion. In this paper I describe the case of the Nemha Bible in more detail and discuss arguments that the Lutherans who published the bible translation might use to influence their co-religionists to work for greater freedom of expression.

Persons with disability who would request assistance, please us “contact us” form

You are invited to our last meeting of the quarter co-sponsored with the Global Christianities workshop.  Please notice the unusual location:  Tuesday, March 10th, 12:00pm-1:20pm in the Pick Hall Lounge.  Erika Dornfeld (M.Div. student) will present a paper entitled, “Indigenous Knowledge and Western Expertise: a Collision for Christian Environmental Ethics in Tanzania, East Africa.”  Lunch will be served.

You are cordially invited to the next meeting of the Theology and Religious Ethics workshop on Tuesday, March 3, noon – 1:20 pm at Swift 200.

Dilara Uskup will present her paper entitled  Blue Bible, Red Bible: Sin or Right? Examining the Impact of Theology on Morality Based Opinions Among Faith Centered African Americans.  Marcella Wilkinson will respond.
This paper puts forth a multidimensional “measure of theology” (vs. traditional “religiosity”) as an alternative measure of examining religious influence on political behavior and public opinion of faith-centered African Americans. The measure of theology was used in research involving faith-centered African Americans to determine the extent to which their political orientation influences issues of morality, and what it says for support or opposition of same-sex marriage.

Lunch will be served.

Persons with disability who would request assistance, please use “contact us” form.

You are invited to our special meeting on Tuesday, February 17, 12:00 – 1:20 pm (room TBD). Prof. Barbara Vinken from the University of Munich will share about her work as part of the Neubauer Collegium research workshop.  Lunch will be served.

You are invited to our next meeting co-sponsored with the Global Christianities workshop on Thursday, February 5th, 12:00pm-1:20pm in Swift 200.

Raúl Zegarra (Ph.D. student in Theology) will present a paper entitled, “Interpreting Pope Francis: David Tracy, Ignacio Ellacuría, and the Method of Critical Correlation.”

Lunch will be provided.

Abstract: This paper aims to provide a theological hermeneutics of Pope Francis’ papacy, putting the emphasis on his Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium. In order to do so I will try to reconstruct what in my view is the hidden method operating in the document, namely, what we may call a “Latin American method of critical correlation.” I claim that Francis’ text is a representative of what David Tracy calls in his foundational Blessed Rage for Order a “method of critical correlation,” but I also maintain that such a method is somehow qualified and expanded by Francis while using something very much like Ellacuría’s understanding of the “Latin American method,” i. e., the method of liberation theology. The goal of the paper is to suggest that the best way to read Francis’ papacy and first important magisterial document, then, is by means of a combination of Tracy’s and Ellacuría’s methodological proposals.

Persons with disability who would request assistance, please use the “contact us” form.

Please join us on Friday, January 30, noon- 1:30 pm in the Common Room.

Néstor Medina is Assistant Professor of Theology and Culture at Regent University, School of Divinity, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. His research focuses on multiple points of intersection between culture, theological knowledge and religious practices among Latinas/os in the US, Canada, and Latin America. Professor Medina is the author of Mestizaje: Remapping Race, Culture, and Faith in Latina/o Catholicism (Orbis 2009) and co-editor of Theology and the Crisis of Engagement: Essays on the Relationship between Theology and the Social Sciences (Pickwick, 2013). He is currently at work on two monographs: “Humanity, Culture and the Spirit,” and a second on Latina/o theological method. Professor Medina received his PhD in theology from the University of St. Michael’s College, Toronto School of Theology, University of Toronto.

The title of his lecture Thursday, January 29 at 4:30 is: The Construction of Mestizaje in Colonial Latin America: A Partial Story.

The title of his presentation in the Theology and Religious Ethics workshop Friday, January 30 at noon is: “U.S. Latina/o Theology: Challenges, Possibilities and Future Prospects.”

The workshop paper is attached. Medina workshop paper Jan 30 2015

Please join us on Tuesday, January 27, noon – 1:30 pm in the Common Room.

Nichole M. Flores is Instructor of Theology at St. Anselm College, Manchester, New Hampshire.   Ms. Flores’ research focuses on the interface between contemporary contextual theologies (rooted especially in U.S. Latino/a theology), political theologies, and Catholic theological ethics with broader political-philosophic traditions of discourse on justice, emotion, and aesthetics. She is a doctoral candidate at Boston College in theological ethics, completing a dissertation entitled “Guadalupe in the Public Square: Theological Aesthetics and the Pursuit of Justice in Liberal Society.”

The title of her lecture Monday, January 26 at 4:30 is: “Beyond Consumptive Solidarity: An Aesthetic Response to Modern Day Slavery”

The title of her presentation in the Theology and Religious Ethics workshop Tuesday, January 27 at noon is: “The Personal is Political: Toward a Vision of Justice in Latina Theology”


A special meeting of the Theology and Religious Ethics workshop with Dr. Robin Lovin on Monday, January 12, 4:00 – 5:30 pm, in the Common Room. Dr. Lovin will lead a discussion entitled Theology and Ethics in Interdisciplinary Contexts.

Robin Lovin is currently the director of research at the Center of Theological Inquiry (CTI), a leading interdisciplinary research center in Princeton, NJ. He is also the Cary Maguire University Professor of Ethics emeritus at Southern Methodist University. He served as Dean of Perkins School of Theology from 1994-2002, and Dean of the Theological School of Drew University from 1991-94. Before that, he spent thirteen years as a faculty member here at the University of Chicago. Prof. Lovin is a former president of The Society of Christian Ethics, a member of the editorial advisory board of Studies in Christian Ethics, and an editor-at-large for the Christian Century.

No advance preparation is expected. Wine, cheese and refreshments will be served.

Persons with disability who would request assistance, please use “contact us” on the website.

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