Recent Books by Faculty



10 questions for Alireza Doostdar about his book, The Iranian Metaphysicals: Explorations in Science, Islam, and the Uncanny




Myths about jewelry reveal diamonds aren't always a girl's best friend

10 questions for Wendy Doniger about her book The Ring of Truth: And Other Myths of Sex and Jewelry


The Political Lives of Saints: Christian-Muslim Mediation in Egypt by Angie Heo, Assistant Professor of the Anthropology and Sociology of Religion. 

Bewildered: Love Poems from Translation of Desires by Michael Sells, the John Henry Barrows Professor of Islamic History and Literature. Translated from the Arabic, Bewildered contains new translations of Ibn al-'Arabī Tarjuman poems in modern poetic English. The translator of a highly praised volume of pre-Islamic qasidas, Desert Tracings, and Stations of Desire, the first renderings of Ibn al-'Arabī Tarjuman, Sells carries into his translations the supple, resonant quality of the original Arabic, so that the poems come to life in English.


The Iranian MetaphysicalsThe Iranian Metaphysicals: Explorations in Science, Islam, and the Uncanny by Alireza Doostdar, Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies and the Anthropology and Sociology of Religion, shows that metaphysical experimentation lies at the center of some of the most influential intellectual and religious movements in modern Iran. These forms of exploration have not only produced a plurality of rational orientations toward metaphysical phenomena but have also fundamentally shaped what is understood as orthodox Shi‘i Islam, including the forms of Islamic rationality at the heart of projects for building and sustaining an Islamic Republic. Read a Q & A on the book with Professor Doostdar and Religion Dispatches

Ring of TruthThe Ring of Truth and Other Myths of Sex and Jewelry  by Wendy Doniger, the Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions, explores mythologies behind women, jewelry, and sex. Professor Doniger answers ten questions about the book over at Religion DispatchesLearn what inspired the book and what had to be left out.

Essays on Gender PerspectivesWhat do African American men have to do with gender? In Black Theology: Essays on Gender Perspectives, Professor of Theology Dwight N. Hopkins draws on over thirty-five years of wrestling with these questions. Too often gender is seen as a "woman's only" discussion. But in reality, men have a gender too. Some say it is biological; others claim it has to do with socialization. Hopkins's career has focused on defining what a black American man is, and how he builds bridges of support and engagement with women.


The Mystics of al-Andalus: Ibn Barrajān and Islamic Thought in the Twelfth Century by Yousef Casewit, Assistant Professor of Qur'anic Studies, focuses on the twelfth century CE, a watershed moment for mysticism in the Muslim West. In al-Andalus, the pioneers of this mystical tradition, the Mu'tabirun or 'Contemplators', championed a synthesis between Muslim scriptural sources and Neoplatonic cosmology. Ibn Barrajān of Seville was most responsible for shaping this new intellectual approach, and is the focus of Casewit's book. 

Friends and Other Strangers: Studies in Religion, Ethics, and Culture by Richard B. Miller, Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Religious Ethics, seeks to chart and expand the field of religious ethics by exploring the implications of taking a cultural turn in the humanities and social sciences.

Emptiness and Omnipresence: An Essential Introduction to Tiantai Buddhism by Brook A. Ziporyn, Professor of Chinese Religion,  Philosophy, and Comparative Thought, puts Tiantai into dialogue with modern philosophical concerns to draw out its implications for ethics, epistemology, and metaphysics. Ziporyn reveals the profound insights of Tiantai Buddhism while stimulating philosophical reflection on its unexpected effects.

Broken Tablets: Levinas, Derrida, and the Literary Afterline of Religion by Sarah Hammerschlag, Associate Professor of Religion and Literature, Philosophy of Religions and History of Judaism, is a reexamination of Derrida and Levinas's textual exchange. The book not only produces a new account of this friendship but also has significant ramifications for debates within Continental philosophy, the study of religion, and political theology.

Global Perspectives

Black Theology: Essays on Global Perspectives  by Dwight N. Hopkins, Professor of Theology, conceptualizes black theology to take on the global reconfigurations and opportunities brought about by the rapidly shrinking earth of fast-paced, worldwide contacts.

Varieties of GiftsVarieties of Gifts: Multiplicity and the Well-Lived Pastoral Life by Cynthia Gano Lindner, Director of Ministry Studies.

The practice of ministry in our rapidly changing, increasingly diverse context is a complicated business. Varieties of Gifts highlights the stories of ministers who thrive in this environment, offering inspiration to readers—ministers, seminary students, and people who care for them—on engaging their own multiplicity to build healthy, sustainable ministry.

Breve apologieBrève apologie pour une moment catholiqueJean-Luc Marion, the Andrew Thomas Greeley and Grace McNichols Greeley Professor of Catholic Studies and Professor of the Philosophy of Religions and Theology, explores the possibility that this could be an extraordinary moment in French history.