women and the bible

Biography

Dr. Jennifer Bird

Growing up in Roanoke, VA, Associate Professor of Religion Jennifer Bird exhibited early signs that teaching was in her future. As a youngster, Jennifer would “hold class” for her pretend students while her parents looked on.

Majoring in mathematics with an education minor, she soon discovered after graduating from Virginia Tech that her own experience in religion and the role of women in religious settings captivated her interest.

Jennifer decided to pursue a master of divinity degree in order to study Biblical languages at Princeton Theological Seminary in New Jersey and served as a teaching assistant during her senior year. From there she moved to Waco, Texas, where she began Ph.D. work at Baylor University, filling both a graduate teaching assistant role for New Testament courses and an interim associate pastor position at Waco Presbyterian Church. She then transferred to Vanderbilt University, in Nashville, Tennessee, to earn a Ph.D. in New Testament and Early Christianity, where she spent four years as a teaching fellow and instructor before arriving at Greensboro College.

Jennifer’s fondness for her profession extends well beyond the classroom. She can be seen around campus mingling with students, cheering at basketball games and attending theatre productions. She believes that to remain in touch with students faculty need to be aware of their students’ pursuits and daily lives beyond class activities.

Traveling, biking, hiking (anything outside, really), reading, and watching films, especially documentaries and indie films, occupy some of her time away from campus, as well as enjoying two cat companions.

Education

  • B.S., Mathematics, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (1994)
  • M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary (2001)
  • Ph.D., New Testament and Early Christianity, Vanderbilt University (2007)

Publications

  • Before Reading Paul, Read This! (a feminist engagement with Paul’s writings and their continuing influence on us today, forthcoming)
  • Abuse, Power and Fearful Obedience: Reconsidering 1 Peter’s Commands to Wives (T&T Clark, 2011)
  • “To What End? Revisiting the Gendered Space of 1 Corinthians 11 from a Postcolonial Perspective” in The Colonized Apostle: Paul and Postcolonialism (Fortress, 2011)
  • “Scripture and Biblical Criticism: Feminist and Postcolonial Interpretations” in The Sacred Text: Artefact, Interpretation, and Doctrinal Formulation (Gorgias, 2010)
  • “Ephesians,” in A Postcolonial Commentary of the New Testament Writings (T&T Clark, 2007)

Areas of Interest

  • Feminist studies
  • Empire and Postcolonial studies
  • Gender and sexuality studies
  • The effects various cultural dynamics had on the early Christian movement and its writings as well as how we then handle them today
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