Shanell Smith On Campus, Ready to Start Teaching

Dr. Shanell T. Smith, the newly-appointed Assistant Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins, has arrived to start work at the Seminary and is preparing to teach New Testament Survey in the fall semester.

In her syllabus, Smith wrote that “thiscourse is designed to help students become familiar with the New Testament texts in a broad, survey fashion. It shall help students learn how to read the biblical texts closely, critically, and constructively.”

“Students will discover that “context matters,” and in the process, learn how to read biblical texts with theological and ethical sensitivity. By becoming more cognizant of their own racial/ethnic, religious, and sociocultural backgrounds, as well as their own biases and presuppositions, students will begin to recognize the ways in which their very selves affect the task of biblical interpretation,” Smith says.

Further information about the course and registration information is availableat our fall courses page.

Smith also will serve as Coordinator of the International Ph.D. Program. She will work with the University of Exeter, the Seminary’s partner in the program, on its operations and serve as liaison for student progress.She will be the primary contact person for prospective students and enrolled students.

At the time of her appointment,Smith said that she decided to come to Hartford Seminary because she was attracted to its multi-faith community, which makes for great opportunities for a rich curriculum, liturgy, and most especially, dialogue.

“At Hartford Seminary, faculty and students are able to identify both similarities and differences between their faiths, helping them to realize that despite any differences they can work together toward common goals. I must also say that when I visited Hartford Seminary, the faculty and staff were so welcoming, and interested in me as a person and not just what I can do for the Seminary, that it just felt right,” Smith said.

Smith has a Bachelor of Arts from Rutgers University, a Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Doctor of Philosophy from the Graduate Division of Religion at Drew University in Madison, N.J.

Her dissertation topic, for which Drew awarded her the Rabbi Dr. Sheldon J. Weltman Prize for the Best Dissertation in Biblical Studies, was “Empire, Gender and Ambiveilence: Toward a Postcolonial Womanist Interpretation of the Woman Babylon in the Book of Revelation.”

Smith wrote “A Perspective on Revelation” in “Global Perspectives on the Bible” (Pearson Prentice Hall, forthcoming 2012).

Hartford Seminary welcomes Dr. Smith to its faculty.

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