Carolyn Chen Named New Co-Director of BCSR

Miranda Schonbrun

BCSR is proud to announce that Carolyn Chen has joined David Marno as Co-Director of the Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion. Carolyn Chen is Associate Professor of Ethnic Studies at UC Berkeley. She is author of Getting Saved in America: Taiwanese Immigration and Religious Experience (Princeton 2008) and co-editor of Sustaining Faith Traditions: Race, Ethnicity, and Religion among …

Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion Community Outreach Program

Miranda Schonbrun

For 2021-2022, the Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion at UC Berkeley is delighted to announce a new Community Outreach Program.

BCSR is offering free interactive presentations and workshops by experts about the place of religion in our world today and the history of religion since antiquity …

BCSR Welcomes Research Associate Steven Barrie-Anthony

Miranda Schonbrun

BCSR is delighted to announce the recent three-year appointment of Steven Barrie-Anthony, PhD, PsyD, as a Research Associate. In his position, Barrie-Anthony will work with Director David Marno and BCSR affiliated faculty to advance the creative and critical study of religion. 

Barrie-Anthony is a scholar of religion and a research psychoanalyst with a clinical practice in the Bay Area…

Message from the Directors

Miranda Schonbrun

Dear Friends of BCSR,

As we look forward to gathering in person in the fall, we also want to reflect on and acknowledge the extraordinary work of BCSR’s faculty, staff, students, and affiliates throughout an extraordinary year. We thank our community, guest speakers, and partner organizations for their engagement, dedication to remaining connected while physically apart, and commitment to the pursuit of the study of religion …

Congratulations to the New DE in the Study of Religion Students

Miranda Schonbrun

The Graduate Group in the Study of Religion is thrilled to welcome the inaugural cohort of the DE in the Study of Religion. The new cohort includes graduate students from Berkeley departments in the social sciences, humanities, and professional schools. Please join us in welcoming our five new DESR students!

Syed Shiraz Ali, Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures
Courtney Bither, History
Yesenia Brambila, Ancient Greek and Roman Studies
Bonnie Cherry, Jurisprudence and Social Policy, Berkeley Law
Allyson Tang, East Asian Languages and Cultures

Congratulations, all!

DESR Open House and Information Session Recording Now Available

Miranda Schonbrun

The Designated Emphasis in the Study of Religion (DESR) recently held an Online Open House and Information Session with Mark Csikszentmihalyi (DESR Chair, BCSR Co-founder, East Asian Languages and Cultures) and David Marno (DESR Board Member, BCSR Co-director, English) for a discussion and Q&A about the DE in the Study of Religion …

DESR Fall 2021 Courses Announced

Miranda Schonbrun

The DESR has approved 9 fall 2021 courses to count towards the Designated Emphasis in the Study of Religion (DESR). These courses reflect the interdisciplinary breadth of the DESR, with core and elective options in Ancient History & Mediterranean Archaeology, Buddhist Studies, Classics, History, History of Art, Italian Studies, Jewish Studies, Music, Near Eastern Studies, and Study of Religion …

2021-22 BCSR New Directions Cohort Announced

Miranda Schonbrun

BCSR faculty will mentor an intellectually diverse set of New Directions in Theology grant winners throughout the academic year. The incoming New Directions students will regularly meet with BCSR faculty to discuss contemporary religious research and to refine their academic projects. 

BCSR welcomes the incoming New Directions cohort and looks forward to working with them in 2021-2022 and beyond! …

BCSR New Directions in Theology Grants for Graduate Students | Applications Due April 12th

Miranda Schonbrun

For the 2021 fall semester, BCSR is offering eight fellowships in the amount of $3,750 each for graduate students to explore the relationship between democracy and religion. Led by two BCSR faculty members, students will meet bi-weekly to read key texts in the history of religion, explore research topics, and meet Berkeley and visiting faculty working in the field. Awardees …

Grad Student Spotlight: Rachel Lim

Miranda Schonbrun

Rachel Lim is a PhD Candidate in Ethnic Studies studying Korean diaspora in the Americas. She is completing a dissertation entitled “Itinerant Belonging: Korean Transnational Migration to and from Mexico.” Her work has been recently published or is forthcoming in The Journal of Asian American Studies and Verge: Studies in Global Asias.

Grad Student Spotlight: Aaron Eldridge

Miranda Schonbrun

Aaron Eldridge is an anthropologist specializing in contemporary asceticism in the Levant. His interdisciplinary research interests include Muslim-Christian entanglements in the Eastern Mediterranean, postcolonial political theologies, historical consciousness, as well as theories of destruction and form of life. His work has appeared in Exchange (2020) and Qui Parle (forthcoming). …

Registration for the March 19-21 Conference of the American Academy of Religion

Miranda Schonbrun

Registration for the March 19-21 Conference of the American Academy of Religion, Western Region is now available online. The conference, which will be held virtually but is technically hosted by the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) in Berkeley, will be of interest to Bay Area scholars working in the area of religious studies. Registration can be found at https://www.aarwr.com/annual-meetings.html. The registration …

Faculty Accomplishments from Fall 2020

Miranda Schonbrun

BCSR is proud to share a sample of recent accomplishments, publications, awards, and news from affiliated faculty from fall 2020.

Please join us in congratulating our affiliated faculty members Charles Hirschkind, Ethan Katz, Rita Lucarelli, and Ronit Stahl on these achievements! …

Faculty Spotlight: Henrike Lange

Miranda Schonbrun

BCSR is proud to share with the community a Faculty Spotlight with Henrike Lange, who holds a joint appointment in the Departments of History of Art and Italian Studies. …

Spring 2021 Religion Courses

Miranda Schonbrun

BCSR faculty and affiliates are offering a wide variety of courses related to religion in spring 2021, spanning diverse fields including Anthropology, Buddhist Studies, Classics, Comparative Literature, East Asian Languages and Cultures, Ethnic Studies, History, History of Art, Italian Studies, Jewish Studies, Near Eastern Studies, and Political Science! …

Poulomi Saha and Grace Goudiss Resource Recommendations 

Miranda Schonbrun

Accompanying the online reflection “Enthralled Subjects: Cults, Conversion, and Quarantine Fixations,” Poulomi Saha and Grace Goudiss provided resource recommendations on the topics of popular media surrounding “cults,” faith, and the history of “cults”/new religious movements. …

Carolyn Chen Resource Recommendations

Miranda Schonbrun

Accompanying the online reflection “The Work of Salvation, the Salvation of Work: Searching for Belonging in an Age of Global Precarity” Carolyn Chen provided resource recommendations on the topics of work, capitalism, and religion. …

Arlie Russell Hochschild Resource Recommendations

Miranda Schonbrun

Accompanying the online reflection “Crossing Divides in a Precarious Future: The White Working Class and the Upcoming General Election” Arlie Russell Hochschild provided resource recommendations on the topics of American right, the polarization of politics, and the dismantling of the working class. …

Niklaus Largier Resource Recommendations

Miranda Schonbrun

Accompanying the online reflection “The Textures of the Soul: Isolation Throughout History and Religion” Niklaus Largier provided resource recommendations on the topics of religion, history, and isolation. …

Thomas W. Laqueur Resource Recommendations

Miranda Schonbrun

Accompanying the online reflection “From Providentialism to Epidemiology: Understanding Pandemics through History” Thomas W. Laqueur provided resource recommendations on the topics of democracy, religion, medicine, government, and death from a historical perspective. …

Announcing BCSR’s Public Forum on Religion and Pandemic

Miranda Schonbrun

As part of the Berkeley Democracy and Public Theology Program, BCSR’s Public Forum on Religion and Pandemic brings together scholars and the public to address the current pandemic and its commensurate crises.

Asking what it means to live, write, and think in the present moment, these conversations explore the intersection between religion and timely topics such as the environment, public health, elections and democracy, religious freedom, and nationalism in order to foster public dialogue and reflection. …

BCSR Receives $500,000 Grant from Henry Luce Foundation for Berkeley Democracy and Public Theology Program

Miranda Schonbrun

Now in its eighth year, UC Berkeley’s interdisciplinary Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion appreciatively announces that it has received a $500,000 grant spanning three years from the Henry Luce Foundation to examine how theology has influenced, and continues to influence, democratic practices. Professors and BCSR Co-Directors Karen Barkey (UC Berkeley) and David Marno (UC Berkeley), and Professor and BCSR Co-founder Jonathan Sheehan (UC Berkeley), will be the Principal Investigators. …