I am grateful for the opportunity to be a Martin Marty Center Junior Fellow in the coming year. As a scholar concerned with the intersection of religion and ethics—and, within these two spheres, of tradition and new ideas—I aspire to produce work that is both academically rigorous and relevant to a broad and diverse public. I look forward to participating in a seminar with my academic peers, to the critical discussion and revision of my ideas, and to the opportunity to learn from others’ projects. I also am eager to approach a broader, ethically-concerned public through my research on the connection between suffering and truth in the religious controversies of the sixteenth century—an era when conceptions of the nature and value of suffering, of the proper locus of pious suffering (and action), and of the sources of truth were all radically transformed. I am eager to discuss these changes and their consequences, which are still with us today, with both students and non-academics. I want, now and in my future career, to reconsider with these two important publics our present conception of suffering and the possibility (and danger) of finding positive meaning in it.
"Suffering and Truth in Sixteenth-Century Religious Controversy”