Greene and Kemp Awarded Grants from Louisville Institute

February 21, 2023

kemp-joel-sq.jpggreene-alison-sq.jpgAssociate Professor of American Religious History Alison Collis Greene and Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible Joel B. Kemp have been awarded Sabbatical Research Grants from the Louisville Institute to support their upcoming book projects.

Greene’s project, “Backwater: Religion, Community, and Justice in a Jim Crow Swamp,” offers a narrative history of religion and environment in a rural eastern North Carolina community. She specifically focuses on the 1947 collaboration between a Black farmers’ cooperative and a multiracial Christian workcamp to create an alternative to agricultural capitalism. Learn more.

Titled “Blackness in 3D: Biblical Race, American Law, and Contemporary Crises,” Kemp’s project expands the ongoing conversation among scholars about the ways churches have played an important role in constructing America’s racial caste systems. He illustrates how the history of racialized interpretations of Genesis 4 (“Mark of Cain”), Genesis 9 (“Curse of Ham”), and Genesis 10 (“Table of Nations”) have contributed to linking Blackness with dangerousness, depravity, and deviance (what Kemp calls the “3Ds of Blackness”)—and, consequently, how these theological constructions have led to legal definitions of and justifications for the violent regulation of Black bodies. Learn more.

Louisville Institute’s Sabbatical Grant for Researchers (SGR) offers grants up to $40,000 to assist research and writing projects that will advance religious and theological scholarship in ways that also address practical issues concerning Christian faith and life, pastoral leadership, and/or religious institutions.

Funded by the Religion Division of Lilly Endowment Inc., Louisville Institute awards grants and fellowships to those who lead and study North American religious institutions, practices, and movements, advancing scholarship to strengthen church, academy, and wider society.