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Vanderbilt has a campus broadcast facility with a dedicated fiber optic line for live TV interviews and a radio ISDN line. The News Service number ((615) 322-2706) has 24/7 on call information. Visit our website to view this information online and to view other experts-at-a-glance. Visit our news website where you can also access our online searchable database of experts. (Last updated May 2010)
James Hudnut-Beumler, dean of the Divinity School; Anne Potter Wilson Distinguished Professor of American Religious History
An ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA), he has published and presented widely in the areas of church history, ethics and philanthropy. Among his publications are the books Looking for God in the Suburbs: The Religion of the American Dream and Its Critics and In Pursuit of the Almighty’s Dollar: A History of Money and American Protestantism. He is a member of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion.
Amy-Jill Levine, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies
Levine examines the literary, historical and cultural implications of Scripture to understand how, when and why various interpretations arise. With a frequent dash of humor, she exposes anti-Jewish, sexist, heterosexist theologies and other forms of prejudice that directly impact people’s lives. Her numerous books and articles address such topics as Christian origins, formative Judaism and the “Historical Jesus.” She is the editor of a 12-volume series, A Feminist Companion to the New Testament and Early Christian Literature and is a featured lecturer in audio/video projects for the Teaching Company’s Great Lectures Series. She has done numerous national media interviews.
Kathleen Flake, associate professor of American religious history and attorney
Flake can discuss such controversial church-state issues such as disputes over the posting of Ten Commandments monuments in public places and court cases involving polygamy. As a Divinity School professor and an attorney, Flake has a unique perspective on the issues surrounding the separation of church and state. Flake teaches courses on American religious history and the interaction between American religion and law. Prior to her appointment at Vanderbilt, she was a litigation attorney in Washington, D.C.
James P. Byrd Jr., associate dean of the Divinity School; assistant professor of American religious history
Byrd teaches a course on warfare and religion, and says that many American wars, including Iraq, have been undertaken using some degree of religious justification. He is an historian on American religions, in particular colonial America and Puritanism. His books include The Challenges of Roger Williams: Religious Liberty, Violent Persecution and the Bible.
Melissa Snarr, assistant professor of ethics and society
Snarr studies the intersection of religion, social change and social/political ethics. She teaches courses ranging from “Religion and War in an Age of Terror” to “Religion and Social Movements” to “Christian Political Thought.” She argues that both Democrats and Republicans misunderstand the religious community in America and could improve their election results by considering the issue with more care. She has researched the alliance of religion and labor in the living wage movement, and is currently studying the United Nations and avenues for global peacemaking from a religious perspective. She is an expert on ethics.