SAVE THE DATE: Migration and Border Crossings

02/07/2019 - 02/09/2019

Columbia Theological Seminary and Emory University’s Center for the Study of Law and Religion
are excited to co-host an important multidisciplinary conference in the spring of 2019.

Migration and Border Crossings

February 7-9, 2019
Columbia Theological Seminary

The conference will bring together theologians, legal scholars, artists and leaders of faith communities to explore the causes, processes and effects of global migration. It will feature keynote addresses by former Poet Laureate, Juan Felipe Herrera, and Dean of Vanderbilt Divinity School, Emilie Townes, as well as several plenary addresses and workshops that will offer insights and tools for addressing immigration related issues.

Confirmed presenters include:

Juan Felipe Herrera – U.S. Poet Laureate from 2015-17. Herrera was the nation’s first Latino Poet Laureate and won the 2008 National Book Critics Award for Half the World in Light. The son of migrant farm workers, Herrera has published 30 books of poetry focusing on questions of identity and migration.

Emilie Townes – Dean and E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Womanist Ethics and Society at the Vanderbilt University Divinity School. A pioneer in Womanist theology, Townes has published and lectured widely on Christian ethics, cultural theory, and postmodern thought. She was the first Black woman to serve as president of the American Academy of Religion in 2008.

Kwok Pui Lan – Distinguished Visiting Professor of Theology at Candler School of Theology. Kwok is a Hong Kong-born, internationally known postcolonial and feminist theologian, who has authored over twenty books in English and Chinese. Kwok was the President of the American Academy of Religion in 2011.

Khaled Beydoun – Professor of Law at the University of Arkansas (Fayetteville) and Senior Affiliated Faculty at the University of California-Berkeley Islamophobia Research Project. Beydoun is a leading scholar on Islamophobia and civil liberties and contributes regularly to Al-Jazeera English, serves as an expert consultant for the US Census Bureau, and has featured his opinion pieces in the New York Times, Washington Post, Newsweek, Salon and the BBC.

Daniel Carroll– Blanchard Professor of Old Testament in the Graduate School of Wheaton College. Carroll has written extensively on Hispanic theology and migration. His books include: Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church, and the Bible and Immigrant Neighbors among Us: Immigration across Theological Traditions.

Peter C. Phan – Ellacuria Chair of Catholic Social Thought at Georgetown University. Phan’s work in theology ranges far and wide and includes influential work on theology and migration, including three co-edited volumes: Contemporary Issues of Migration and TheologyTheology of Migration in the Abrahamic Religions; and Christianities in Migration. Phan is the first non-Anglo to be elected President of the Catholic Theological Society of America and recipient of the 2010 John Courtney Murray Award.

Todd Green – Associate Professor of Religion at Luther College. A nationally recognized expert on Islamophobia, Green served as a Franklin Fellow at the U.S. State Department in 2016-17 and has given lectures on Islamophobia to federal agencies, including the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security. Green has contributed to The Huffington Post and has been interviewed by media outlets such as CNN, NPR, Al Jazeera, France 24, Reuters, and The Intercept.

Kristin Heyer – Professor of Theological Ethics at Boston College. A scholar of social ethics and Catholic social thought, Heyer has written and lectured extensively on the ethics of migration, including in her book Kinship across Borders: A Christian Ethic of Immigration and in dozens of chapters and articles.

Claudio Carvalhaes – Associate Professor of Worship at Union Theological Seminary. A native Brazilian, Carvalhaes is a theologian, liturgist and artist whose work reimagines liturgy for liberation in a postcolonial and globalized context. He has preached and led worship at events around the world, including at the Wild Goose Festival and Festival of Homiletics.

Rose Cuison Villazor – Professor of Law and Chancellor’s Social Justice Scholar at Rutgers University Law School.  Villazor is an expert in immigration, citizenship, property law and race and the law. She is a nationally-regarded scholar with an active record in social justice issues and is the founder of the Rutgers Center for Immigration Law, Policy and Justice. Her books include The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965: Legislating a New America (2015) (with Gabriel “Jack” Chin).

Jehu J. Hanciles – D. W. and Ruth Brooks Associate Professor of World Christianity at Candler School of Theology. Hanciles has lived and worked in Sierra Leone, Scotland, Zimbabwe and the United States. Hanciles’ current research surveys the history of global Christian expansion through the lens of migration. His books include: Euthanasia of a Mission: African Church Autonomy in a Colonial Context (2002) and Beyond Christendom: Globalization, African Migration and the Transformation of the West (2009).

The conference will also feature a juried photo exhibition on the theme of migration and Emory University’s Staibdance production of “Moat,” an evening length exploration of human migration from Iran to a small Pennsylvania town during the Iran hostage crisis.

Registration will open in September 2018.

This conference is supported by the World Council of Churches’s Interfaith Wing and the Council on American Islamic Relations.

Stay tuned for more details.

Conference co-organizers:
Raj Nadella, Columbia Theological Seminary
Silas Allard, Emory University Center for the Study of Law and Religion


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