Volume 35
Issue 2
Fall 2012

 

 

PCR Program:
2012 AAR Meeting in Chicago

PCR Pre-Sessions:

Friday, November 16, 2012
McCormick Place South-401BC

2:00 - 4:00 pm
PANEL: Beyond A Dangerous Method:
Sabina Spielrein’s Influence on Jung, Freud and Piaget

4:30 - 6:30 pm
PANEL: Teaching Jung: AAR Teaching Religious Studies Series

7:00 - 9:30 pm
PCR Dinner @ Italian Bistro Volare

- - -

Saturday, November 17, 2012
McCormick Place North-426A

9:00 am-11:30 am
Business Meeting/Works in Progress

 

Regular Sessions:

A18-270: Sunday, November 18, 2012
3:00 - 4:30 pm
McCormick Place North-227A

Spirituality in a (Post) Secular Age:
European and North-American Perspectives

Panelists:
Lars Danbolt, Norwegian School of Theology
Hetty Zock, University of Groningen
Herman Westerink, University of Vienna

Responding:
Lucy Bregman, Temple University

 

A18-325: Sunday, November 18, 2012
5:00 - 6:30 pm
McCormick Place North-227A

Religious and Psychological Responses to the Decline of Empires

Michael Nichols, Saint Joseph's College
How the World Ended:
Retrospective Eschatology and the Theology of Hope versus Loss

Tim Langille, University of Toronto
Remembering What Was Not in 2 Maccabees

Cedric Johnson, Wesley Theological Seminary
Remembrance, Representation and the Reconstruction of Diasporic African Identities

Responding:
Hans Alma, Universiteit voor Humanistiek te Utrecht

 

A20-123: Tuesday, November 20, 2012
9:00 - 11:30 am
McCormick Place West-471A

Kohutian and Contemporary Self-Psychological Approaches
in the Psychology of Religion

Lisa Cataldo, Fordham University
What's Kohut Got to Do With It? Contemporary Self Psychological Theories and Their Implications for Understanding Religious Experience

Peter Capretto, Vanderbilt University
Psychoanalysis, Alterity, and Pneumatology: A Phenomenological and Theological Approach to Empathy and Ethics in Kohut

Storm Swain, Lutheran Theological Seminary, Philadelphia
Bearing the Unbearable: A Window on the Pastoral Transferences

Raynard Smith, New Brunswick Theological Seminary
"My Soul Says Yes to My Lord": Black Churches as Selfobject Environments

Nikolas Zanetti, Boston University
Existential Loneliness Revisited: Challenging Kohut's Ontology of the Self

 

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News from PCR Members

Nathan Carlin (University of Texas Medical School at Houston) and Donald Capps (Princeton Theological Seminary) have co-authored a new book on happiness. Nathan and Don had been hearing a lot about Positive Psychology in recent years, and they got kind of curious about the topic of happiness. And so they decided to read the major books on happiness in the 20th century and the 21st century, which they summarize and evaluate in 100 Years of Happiness: Insights and Findings from the Experts (Praeger, 2012). The book is a kind of textbook; it is neutral in tone so as to give happiness—and its critics—a fair hearing. At the end of the book Nathan and Don offer their own thoughts on happiness by means of a fictional conversation. The conversation reflects their easy-going approach to life—and to happiness.

From Pamela Cooper-White (Columbia Theological Seminary) comes the news that the 2nd revised edition of her book The Cry of Tamar: Violence Against Women and the Church’s Response has been released by Fortress Press. In response to a question about what it was like to revise and update the book, Pamela said this: “The process was saddening, to revisit such horrible realities about the prevalence (still) of violence against women in the U.S. and around the world. However, it was heartening to see the great increase in advocacy and public awareness, increasing awareness and cooperation among religious leaders and community leaders, and the rise of sophisticated global efforts to end violence against women. I could wish naively that a 2nd edition wasn't needed, but unfortunately we still have a long way to go, and in the U.S. we are far from having this problem ‘solved’ in spite of much vigorous advocacy and political action. The book documents both the advances in the field, and new awareness about forms of violence not previously as well known such as stalking, cyberstalking, and human trafficking. I also have learned much from colleagues since the 1st edition in 1995, and there is a section in the Introduction addressing new questions re: theorizing violence and victimization.”

Jim Higginbotham (Earlham School of Religion) reports that he and Michael Koppel of Wesley Theological Seminary co-led a 2-week study tour of China this year. The 12 participants from three seminaries visited churches and seminaries in four cities, met with leaders and pastors from the Chinese Protestant Church, and dialogued with students and faculty from a Buddhist academy.

Chris Ross (Wilfred Laurier University) gives this update: “Immediately following AAR I am giving the keynote address at the annual Type and Faith conference in Northampton England 22-23 Nov. entitled - the same as the book I am finishing with Leslie Francis - Spiritual Pathways: the Play of Type and Archetype in Building Religious Community.”

Martha Robbins (Pittsburgh Theological Seminary) shares this news: “At the end of June 2013, I will be retiring from my faculty position as Joan Marshall Associate Professor of Pastoral Care at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in order to further develop the Pneuma Spiritual Direction & Leadership Program to be a part of Pneuma Institute, an independent organization (in the making) with collaborative arrangements with Academic and Pastoral Institutions in various parts of the country. I will update the PCR community when the Pneuma Institute website goes live. I plan to attend AAR and hope to see many of you there.”

Lewis Rambo (San Francisco Theological Seminary) is currently a Visiting Professor of Psychology and Religion at Yonsei University in South Korea. He offers this announcement about the latest issue of the journal Pastoral Psychology, which he serves as editor in chief: “The current issue of Pastoral Psychology (Vol. 61, December, 2012) focuses on the Psychology of Religion in China. Go to http://link.springer.com/journal/11089/61/5/page/1.

This special issue brings together psychologists from China and the United States for a sustained exploration of various facets of psychology and religion. By expanding the horizons of psychology of religion through vigorous and critical engagement with colleagues from two different cultures and histories, we enrich our own understanding of the nature of psychology and the nature of religion. Topics include the history of psychology of religion in China; clinical engagement with survivors of the catastrophic earthquake in southwest China May 12, 2008; Jung and China; methods of research; conversion to Buddhism and Christianity; Chinese indigenous psychology; and many other topics. If you have questions about this special issue, please write me at lewisrayrambo@yahoo.com. Pastoral Psychology is open to your suggestions for book reviews and special issues (you are welcome to be a guest editor of a topic of your choice).”

From new PCR member Kathryn LaFevers Evans (Pacific Graduate Institute) comes this introduction: “I teach in the Engaged Humanities & the Creative Life program at Pacifica Graduate Institute, where depth and archetypal psychology are taught through literature and the arts, with creative projects as the course process and end-product. My course titled `Active Imagination, Dreams, and Psychic Creativity' centers on C. G. Jung's Red Book, with its highly psychoactive archetypal symbols tracing Jung's personal dream-vision quest. Devotional nature poetry is a creative specialty of mine, and we found during this course that students were easily able to write transformational poetry as part of their creative process and product. I'm working on a Blog that showcases original nature photography that goes with my poetry, and may publish my collection in Blog format or as a coffee table book; in the meantime, I've published my collection on Scribd.com, attesting to the transformative potential of writing depth and archetypal poetry: http://www.scribd.com/doc/107315157/Climb-the-Sky-Love-Poems-to-Spirit-3

"I've begun researching the James Hillman Collection in OPUS Archives & Research Center, in order to complete a long-anticipated, long-researched book project, which now bears the working-title De Magia naturali: On Natural Magic, Depth & Archetypal Psychology in New Mythos Theory & Practice. A paper I'm presenting at Columbia University in December, titled "Natural Magic: Imaginal Mythopoetics in De Magia naturali and The Red Book" will be included in that book. Website for the Twenty-Third Medieval & Renaissance Conference at Barnard College, Columbia University, can be found here.

Duane R. Bidwell (Claremont School of Theology) announces his new book, Empowering couples: a narrative approach to spiritual care, which will be published in February 2013 by Fortress Press. The book critically correlates desert spirituality, narrative psychotherapy, and John Gottman's empirical research on successful relationships.

John Falcone (Boston College) has this to report: “The [somewhat unfortunately named] International Network of Societies for Catholic Theology (INSeCT) has launched a 3-year, global research project on ... theology and power abuse in Church and Society. Findings will be presented at INSeCT’s next global congress in summer 2014. I found out about this by giving a paper on ‘empowerment through creative ritual’ at a related conference in early September, "Redeeming Power," at St. Mary's University College (Twickenham) outside London. The coordinator of the European wing of this global project is Dr. Stephen Bullivant at St. Mary's (stephen.bullivant@smuc.ac.uk). The conference had a very PCR feel, with presenters on theology, psychology, bioethics, social work, etc. from Catholic, Anglican/Episcopalian and other traditions. Catholic theology societies in the US and Canada are supposed to be doing their own work toward this overall global project. When I talked to Stephen, he was very hopeful to move the project forward and to get interested people connected; the whole things still appears to be in a formative stage. Here are some relevant websites for folks who are interested: http://www.smuc.ac.uk/inspire/redeeming-power.htm http://www.kuleuven.be/eurotheo/home/ESCT_Research_Project/"

Wayne G. Rollins was honored with a Festschrift in honor of his key role in developing psychological approaches for biblical criticism. Edited by J. Harold Ellens, Psychological Hermeneutics for Biblical Themes and Texts (T&T Clark, 2012), includes contributions from several other past and current PCR members: D. Andrew Kille, Donald Capps, Ralph Underwood, Hal Childs, Michael Willet Newheart, and Schuyler Brown.

Joseph Kramp (Drew University) reports that his article "Symbolic Loss and American Adolescents: Mourning in Teenage Cinema," built off of his AAR presentation last year in San Francisco, has been published by Journal of Religion and Health (Springer). He is also putting the finishing touches on his book, Emerson: A Psychological Biography (Praeger). In response to a question about Emerson’s role in the history of the psychology of religion, Joe had this to say: “My book on Emerson explores his failed vocational quest to become a Unitarian minister from a psychobiographical perspective (I employed the life cycle theory of Erikson and Peter Homans' concept of symbolic loss). I then examine how this failed attempt frames his decision to become a professional lecturer and how his experiences in seminary condition his interpretations of culture, religion, and history. I also argue that Emerson scholarship is largely repetitive because American intellectuals and culture frequently fall back on or revisit Emerson's life and works to solve contemporary cultural, political, social, religious crises--this is why books and dissertations on Emerson are legion (yet my book and Richard Hutch's 1983 book Emerson's Optics, are the only psychobiographies ever written on Emerson. I argue that the methodology of psychobiography gives us a radically different point of view than authors writing from the disciplines of history or philosophy, where I personally feel like the wheel is constantly reinvented). Thus, my review of literature on Emerson is part of the evidence I use to argue that Emerson was/is a culture maker who assists Americans in the event of experiencing what Homan's termed symbolic loss.

“To address your question about Emerson in relation to the psychology of religion: I'm not sure if you ever have seen the passage, but Freud once said that he abstained from reading much Nietzsche because he did not want to be accused of plagiarism. This is significant for quickly locating Emerson in the history and theory of psychology of religion because Nietzsche listed Emerson as his major intellectual benefactor (Emerson, not Nietzsche, was the first to proclaim that God is dead—see his famous Harvard Divinity School address for this passage). Furthermore, Emerson's obsession with the eye is also psychoanalytic in nature, as this was one of the organs that would occupy Freud's attention in his writings, most obviously the ones on Oedipus.

“Also, Emerson was good friends with Henry James, Sr., who attended my alma mater (Princeton Theological Seminary) for 2 years to train to become a minister before dropping out. When William James was born, Emerson met up with Henry James Sr. in New York City and Emerson is rumored to have given baby William a kind of "transcendentalist blessing" of some kind (Richard Hutch wrote a really nice article on this happening for The Psychoanalytic Review back in the 70s--I can find the citation for you, if you want).

“Emerson is often thought of as a literary figure for his poems and prose, as he should be. But in my mind he is probably the first American psychologist of religion, in the sense that his literary work was more than anything else a kind of searching for how to work through contingency and the relationship between that contingency in human life and what theology could say about God. Emerson also never ceased of thinking of himself as a minister--he claims this at the end of his resignation from the ministry, months after his ordination. He was fortunate that the lyceum movement was just starting to emerge (what today would be community colleges and the start of state college education across America) as he withdrew from the church, otherwise I'm not sure if we would even know who he is today.

“Lastly, of important note, most people do not know this but I highlight it in my book: Emerson came from a family with chronic and debilitating mental illnesses. 2 of his brothers died either in or shortly after stays in the McLean Asylum (which is still around—I have a friend who works there—its just outside of Boston) and another brother died having experienced what Emerson termed a chronic and severe lifelong depression. One of the minor arguments of my book is that these illnesses were arguably genetic but best understood from the perspective of the Emerson family system that placed a strong emphasis on becoming Unitarian ministers. Emerson's brother's mental illnesses were related, in other words, to their sense of having been total failures and the whole concept of overcoming this sense of being a failure is a major theme in Emerson's writings (see his essay ‘On Compensation’). So, here again Emerson made the first major mark in America in psychology of/and religion: he offered literary/psychological interpretation of religious experiences and religiously pre-occupied mental illnesses in his own family.”

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Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

This announcement comes from Lee Bailey and David Leeming: The second edition of the online and print Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion (Springer Publishing) is partly online and will soon be added to the searchable first edition already online, at www.springerreference.com. Many new articles with photographs, expanding the scope of the Encyclopedia in the areas of world religions, women in religion, and ecology and religion, are beginning to appear online, in addition to the first edition's articles on pastoral counseling, psychology and religion, religion and culture, and many other topics, such as "Sex and Religion: A Feminist View" and "Religious Fundamentalism and Terrorism," seen psychologically. If your library has not yet subscribed, you might want to request the acquisition. [For the full searchable text of the first edition in print online, go to www.springerlink.com.] 

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Psychology and Biblical Studies
Sessions at SBL

See the Psybibs website for updates: www.psybibs.org

Reviews of Two Books

S17-125. Saturday, November 17, 9:00 -11:30 am
E262 – McCormick Place

Review Panels on:

Barbara Leung Lai, Through The “I” Window:
The Inner Life of Characters in the Hebrew Bible
(Sheffield, 2011)

Kamila Blessing, Families of the Bible: A New Perspective
(Praeger, 2010)

Jacob, David and Jonah:
Psychological Perspectives on the Hebrew Scriptures

S17-239. Saturday, November 17, 1:00 – 3:30 pm
N138 – McCormick Place

Psychological Reflections on Readers and Reading

S19-139. Monday, November 19, 9:00 – 11:30 am
W474a – McCormick Place

In Memory of Walter Wink

S17-225. Saturday, November 17, 1:00 – 3:00 pm
Room: W176b – McCormick Place

This is a special joint session with the Psychology and Biblical Studies Section (SBL) and the Scriptural/Contextual Ethics Group (AAR). We gather to honor the legacy of Walter Wink (1935-2012), powerful ponderer of the Powers. He taught us to read, think, question, protest, love, imagine, play, and (with his wife June) dance. The New York Times called him “an influential liberal theologian”; one website labeled him “a false prophet.” Most simply knew him as a “Human Being.”

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Other AAR Sessions of Interest

A17-108 Religion and the Social Sciences Section and Religion and Humanism Group
Saturday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

Author Meets Readers: Ethical, Philosophical, and Theological Responses to Christian Smith's What is a Person? Rethinking Humanity, Social Life, and the Moral Good from the Person Up (University of Chicago Press, 2011)
Panelists: Slavica Jakelic, University of Virginia Kevin Schilbrack, Western Carolina University Aline Kalbian, Florida State University David Gushee, Mercer University Responding: Christian Smith, University of Notre Dame

A18-107 Religion and the Social Sciences Section
Sunday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

Race, Ethnicity, Immigration, and Religion:
Present Realities and Future Directions

A18-207 Religion and the Social Sciences Section
Sunday - 1:00 PM-2:30 PM

Frantz Fanon's Analysis of Religion and Theology

A19-108 Religion and the Social Sciences Section
Monday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

Community Organizing and Religious Responses to Economic Inequality

A19-201 Religion and the Social Sciences Section Monday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM

Exceeding Boundaries:
Approaches to Transnationalism in North American Religions
Panelists: Justin Stein, University of Toronto Michael J. Altman, Emory University Elaine Peña, George Washington University Heather D. Curtis, Tufts University

A20-109 Religion and the Social Sciences Section
Tuesday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

Neoliberalism and its Religious Critics

A17-315 Christian Spirituality Group and Practical Theology Group
Saturday - 4:00 PM-6:30 PM

The Shattered Self: Trauma and Spiritual Practice

A18-226 Practical Theology Group
Sunday - 1:00 PM-2:30 PM

Practical Theology in the Face of Violence and Tragedy

A19-130 Practical Theology Group
Monday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

Practical Theology and Popular Culture

A17-213 Cognitive Science of Religion Group
Saturday - 1:00 PM-3:30 PM

Does Religion Exploit Mating Cognition?: Exploring Sexual Selection Theory as a New Path in the Cognitive Science of Religion
Panelists: Jason Slone, Tiffin University James Van Slyke, University of California, Irvine Lee McCorkle, Masaryk University Responding: Robert McCauley, Emory University

A18-216 Cognitive Science of Religion Group
Sunday - 1:00 PM-2:30 PM

Enough Theorizing - What Do the Data Show? Research Findings from Three Empirical Studies in the Cognitive Science of Religion

A20-117 Cognitive Science of Religion Group and Tantric Studies Group
Tuesday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

Tantra and Cognitive Science: Ritual, Language, and the Body in Dialogue

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Thanks to Our Members

Those who have paid dues for the 2011-2012 year include: Kirk Bingaman; Kathleen Bishop; Lucy Bregman; Kelly Bulkeley; Lee Butler; Eileen Campbell-Reed; Pamela Cooper-White; Nathan Carlin; Lisa Cataldo; Margarita Guillory; James W. Jones; Felicity Kelcourse; D. Andrew Kille; Joseph Kramp; John McDargh; Isabelle Noth; Lewis Rambo; Martha Reineke; Lallene Rector; Gregory Schneider; Phillis Sheppard; Raynard Smith; Storm Swain; Hendrika Vande Kemp; Jessica Van Denend; Sonia Waters; Herman Westerink; Katherine Wiebe; and Hetty Zock.

Membership dues in PCR support resources for audio-visual equipment at the Annual Meeting. These costs, imposed by the host city hotels, have been increasing steadily over the past several years. Feel the warm glow of knowing that you're helping to enhance PCR sessions, subsidize grad students' attendance at the PCR dinner and to distribute PCR-related information to scholars, clinicians, and clergy members interested in our work.

$25.00 Regular Membership; $15.00 Student Membership (with copy of student ID). Checks should be payable to Person, Culture, & Religion Group. Send to: Kelly Bulkeley, Secretary/Treasurer, 226 Amherst Avenue, Kensington CA 94708; Phone: 510-528-0226; Fax is same; E-mail: bulkeleyk@gmail.com.

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Psychology, Culture & Religion News Volume 35, Issue 2

Editor: Kelly Bulkeley; Layout: D. Andrew Kille

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