Biography

Earned and Honorary Degrees

PhD Religious Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
MA Religious Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
BA Religious Studies, Washington University in St. Louis

Background

I am a cultural historian specializing in the social and intellectual history of early Christianity (ca. 50-500 CE), with attendant interests in ancient Judaism, early Islam, and the broader ancient Mediterranean world. My research and teaching draw on insights from gender studies, cultural histories of the body, ritual theory, and ecology.

Prior to joining the Northland College faculty, I graduated from Washington University in St. Louis and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, studying ancient Mediterranean religions. I am originally from Fort Scott, a small farming community in southeast Kansas.

Research

My research examines the relationship between the human body and its adjacent environments in ancient Christian literature, with a focus on how these traditions construct human and nonhuman ecosystems. My current research looks at portrayals of demonic bodies in early Christian literature, especially in how demonic spirits were important sites of negotiation as Christians formulated ideas regarding the Christian body and ritual practice.

Courses

My course offerings include Religion and Nature; the Study of Religion; Religion, Gender, and Sexuality; Myth and Ritual; Christian Thought; Jesus in Popular Cultures; Islam; History of Western Philosophy I (Ancient Philosophy); and Idea of God (an introduction to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam).

Personal Interests

I enjoy traveling, live music, sporting events, and hiking.