Graduate Students

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Graduate Students


Name/Contact Info Prior Degrees Area of Focus Research Interests

Ryne Beddard

B.A., University of Mount Olive
M.A., University of Denver
Religion and Culture Religion, Race, and Environment in the antebellum Great Dismal Swamp and Tidewater region; Religion and Race in the U.S. South; Critical Theory and Ethics

Arpan Bhandari

B.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
M.A., Duke University
Islamic Studies South Asian Sufism, Sufi texts, Sufi Music and Poetry, Intersections of Islam, Historical interactions of Islam

Emily Branton

B.A., Smith College
M.A., University of Chicago
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Hebrew Bible; ancient Near Eastern iconography and literature; metaphor theory; translation

Jocelyn Burney

B.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
M.A.R., Yale Divinity School
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Ancient Judaism, Hellenistic and Roman archaeology in the Eastern Mediterranean; diaspora, migration, and identity; Jewish communities in Greece, the Aegean, and Asia Minor; ancient synagogues

Vinna Chintaram

B.A., Brigham Young University-Idaho
M.A., Utah State University
Religion and Culture Ethnography of global Christianities; Decolonization and Religion; Religion in Indian Diaspora

Seonghyun Choi

B.A., Seoul Theological University
M.T.S., Vanderbilt Divinity School
M.A.R., Yale Divinity School
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Hebrew Bible; Late Second Temple Judaism; Dead Sea Scrolls; History of Biblical Interpretation; Disability Studies

Brian A. Coussens

B.A., Georgia Southern University
M.A., Wheaton College
M.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Second Temple Judaism; Archaeology of the Second Temple Period; Herodian Architecture; Architecture/Place in Agency and Memory

Israel Dominguez

B.A., University of Texas at Austin
M.A., University of Colorado Boulder
Religion in the Americas U.S.-Mexico borderlands; Decolonization and religion; Non-institutional religious healing; “Folk” traditions; Critical race theory; Queer theory; Intersections of gender, race, and colonization

Luke Drake

B.A., Brigham Young University
M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School
Ancient Mediterranean Religions New Testament, early Christianity, early Judaism

Bo Eberle

B.A., The Ohio State University
M.Div., Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York
Religion and Culture Materialisms and Religion; Philosophy of Science and Religion; Post-secular Religious Theory and Analysis; Critical Theory and Political Economy

Isaiah Ellis

B.A., Trinity University
M.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
Religion and Culture Space and Place;
Material and Visual Culture;
Theory and Method;
Religion in the Americas;
American South/Civil War and Reconstruction

Yasmine Flodin-Ali

B.A., University of Wisconsin Madison
M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School
Islamic Studies race and racialization, gender and sexuality, Islam in America, Islamic modernism, Islamic revival movements
Michelle Freeman

Michelle Freeman

B.A., The Ohio State University
M.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
Ancient Mediterranean Religions The cult of saints, relics, homiletics, the body and senses, and ritual/practice in late ancient Christianity

Jerry Grimes

B.A., Saint Augustine’s University
M.Div., Virginia Union University
M.A., Fuller Seminary
Th.M., Union Presbyterian Seminary
D.Min., Liberty University
Religion in the Americas Religious History; Gender Studies; Socioreligious Dynamics in Postbellum North Carolina circa 1865; Nineteenth century missiology

Beck Henriksen

B.A., Biola University
B.S., Biola University
M.A.R., Yale Divinity School
M.A., Brown University
Religion and Culture gender, sexuality, queer & trans theory; ethnography of global christianities; material and visual culture & performance studies

Nathan Jumper

B.S./B.A. (dual bachelor’s degree), Cairn University
M.M. (dual master’s degree), Temple University
M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary
Religion and Culture Religion and technology; Metaphysics (post-Heideggerian); Psychedelic philosophy; Afrofuturism; Post-secularism

Carter Kurtz

B.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
M.A., Duke University
Religion in the Americas Religion, race, and gender in the Civil War; Southern women and institutions of white supremacy; 19th century death and funerary culture in the United States and Great Britain

Sierra Lawson

B.A., The University of Alabama
M.A., The University of Alabama
Religion and Culture History of Iberian Peninsula, Colonial Latin America, Social Theory, Marian Apparitions, Digital Humanities, Identity Formation

Bryce McCormick

Bachelor of Music, Virginia Commonwealth University
M.T.S., Duke Divinity School
Religion in the Americas History of religion, race, and music in the US South with specific interest in antebellum New Orleans; Mardi Gras masking traditions; critical race theory; conservative Protestantism in the Americas

John Miller

B.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
J.D., UNC School of Law
Islamic Studies Qur’anic Hermeneutics; Liberal Islamic Thought; Rationalism in Islam; Classical and Contemporary Shi`i Thought; Philosophy of Law

Alejandro Hermes Moreiras Villarós

B.A., Hampshire College
Five College Certificate in M.E. Studies
M.A., Hebrew University of Jerusalem
M.T.S., McGill University
Religion and Culture Marrano and Morisco culture and history, Spain, Israel, Middle East politics and international affairs, ethnography, anthropology, critical theory, origins and new beginnings, politics of religion, history of religion, ghosts, Abrahamic religions, frontiers

Christopher Morey

B.A., Brigham Young University
M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School
Ancient Mediterranean Religions New Testament; Historical Jesus; Second Temple Judaism; Jewish Interpretation of Scripture

Hinasahar Muneeruddin

B.A., Northwestern University
M.A., Columbia University in the City of New York
Islamic Studies intersections of Islam, race, gender, Muslim feminism(s), and subjectivity

Mariana Nájera

B.A., Rice University Religion and Culture Syncretism, ritual, and belief in colonial Latin America; gender and sexuality; traditional medicine; religion and material culture; domestic and “folk” traditions

Tine Rassalle

B.A., Gent University
M.A., Gent University
B.A., Leiden University
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Archaeology of the Ancient Near East; Ancient Israelite Religion; Early Christianity and Judaism and its Material Culture; Museum Studies and Heritage Management

Nathan Schradle

B.A., Occidental College
M.A., New York University
Religion and Culture Religion and Media, Religion and Technology/New Media, Critical Theory and Religion

Ehsan Sheikholharam

MArch, University of Miami Islamic Studies Ideology and the Religiosity of Non-religious Architecture; Symptoms and the Problem of Surface (bodies and buildings), Margins and the Formation of Contested Identities, Aga Khan Award for Architecture

Ben Sheppard

A.B., University of Georgia
M.A., University of Chicago
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Christian organization and structures of authority in 1st & 2nd centuries; the Pauline network and its development; space and territoriality in Ignatius of Antioch; consequences of mobility in early Christian communities; production of culture; study of religion as social practice

Joanna Sierks Smith

B.A., Connecticut College
M.A., UNC-Chapel Hill
Religion in the Americas New Religious Movements; Religion and Law; Religion and Literature; Religion, Animals, and the Environment

Timothy Smith

B.A., Ursinus College
M.A., Sophia University (上智大学)
Religions of Asia Japanese New Religions, interactions between religion and the state, religion as a form of resistance and as a means of control, folk traditions, Japanese mythology, Shinto and Buddhist combinative movements

Ariadne Tsoulouhas

B.A., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
M.A.R., Yale Divinity School
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Second Temple Judaism; Hebrew Bible; wisdom literature; affect theory; pedagogies of emotions and the self; necropolitics; hauntology; Greco-Roman religion
Miguel Vargas

Miguel M. Vargas

B.A., University of North Texas
M.A., University of North Texas
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Hellenistic Judaism, Jewish Marginalization in the Hellenistic Diaspora, Second Temple Judaism, Early Christianity

Thomas Waldrupe

B.A., Carson Newman University
M.S., University of Tennessee
Postgraduate Diploma, Oxford University
M.A., Duke University
Ancient Mediterranean Religions Permeabilities among Early Christian asceticism, Greek philosophical traditions, and South Asian ascetic traditions; Virtuality and fictive or secondary religions