Womack Awarded Grant from Louisville Institute

March 30, 2021

Deanna WomackAssistant Professor of History of Religions and Multifaith Relations Deanna Ferree Womack has been awarded a Sabbatical Grant for Researchers from Louisville Institute to support her upcoming book, Imaging Islam: Gender, Race, and American Protestant Encounters with Muslims.

Womack will take a yearlong sabbatical during the 2021-2022 academic year to complete the project, which will offer a new way for churches to understand and respond to the anti-Muslim sentiments and violent Islamophobic acts that have surged in the 21st century United States.

Geared towards pastors, Christian educators, seminary students, and North American congregations, Womack’s book will trace the roots of Anglophone Protestant discourses on women and violence in Islam that have prevented American Protestants from interrogating their own racialized views of Muslims, acknowledging the diverse understandings of gender across the Islamic world, and allowing Muslim women and men to represent their own lives and experiences.

“Many American Protestants subscribe to essentialist, racist notions about Islamic patriarchy and violence. My project identifies the historical role of Anglophone Protestant thought in shaping such notions and provides resources for advancing Christian-Muslim relations today,” Womack says.

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.

Photo: Madyun Photography