The most attractive aspect of a Martin Marty Center Junior Fellowship is its fostering of meaningful conversations with a wide range of people beyond my discipline.
Because my dissertation better defines a major change in the conception of the origins of the gospels and treats how that change fed into American religious polemic during the late 18th and 19th centuries, I have had regular exchanges with scholars of American religion and the Bible. Thus, I welcome the unexpected ways in which perspectives of specialists in other traditions will challenge and improve my thinking, as I work on completing the majority of my dissertation chapters.
Furthermore, I am very excited to be teaching a class at a university in the Chicagoland area. Although I co-taught an open enrollment class at a local church and have given private language lessons to a variety of individuals, I have never taught at an institution beyond the University of Chicago. I look forward to creating a class that fosters critical thinking about religious truth claims in modern American, and working through these important issues with students in the spirit of academic rigor that characterizes the Martin Marty Center's approach to the role of religion in public life.