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Head Librarian & Professor
The Reverend A. Katherine Grieb, Ph.D., William Meade Professor of Biblical Interpretation and New Testament at Virginia Theological Seminary, recommends the following books as part of the Bishop Payne Library’s monthly series highlighting a faculty member’s “picks”:
Richard N. Longenecker, The Epistle to the Romans (NIGTC, Due out in March 2016 from Eerdmans)
When an experienced and careful Paul scholar delivers a major new commentary on Romans, it is an event worth celebrating. Longenecker’s book, with its attention to the history of the interpretation of Romans through the centuries as well as his own thoughtful engagement with the text, will be one of the few commentaries that frame the discussion of this most important Pauline epistle for years to come.
Rowan Williams, Meeting God in Paul (London: SPCK Publishing, 2015)
This is the perfect book for pastors and preachers seeking to engage or re-engage the apostle Paul theologically and would make a splendid Lenten reading resource. The 104th Archbishop of Canterbury is well-known for his theological acuity, his personal integrity, and his deeply rooted life of prayer. These virtues make him a trustworthy guide to Paul’s context and to the social implications of Paul’s theological insights which continue to be relevant in our own Anglican context.
Patricia Bell-Scott, The Firebrand and the First Lady (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2016)
Bell-Scott’s book is subtitled “Pauli Murray, Eleanor Roosevelt, and the Struggle for Social Justice” and describes itself as “a portrait of a friendship” between the African-American activist and feminist (who later became a highly effective lawyer, a civil rights activist, an author, and an Episcopal priest) and a first lady of the US (who later became the first chair of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights.) Murray first met Roosevelt at a New Deal camp for women in upstate New York and these two prolific letter writers continued to influence one another’s thinking for years.
Sven Beckert, Empire of Cotton: A Global History (Vintage, 2015)
This book has already won several prizes for its excellent study of the relationship between the history of the production of cotton and the origins of modern capitalism. Virtually everywhere cotton has been grown, from the very beginning, it has been accompanied by a struggle between slaves and planters, factory workers and owners, merchants and economic regulators. These forces and ongoing struggles remain important for any attempt to understand the global economy and its economic inequalities.
William T. Cavanaugh, Field Hospital: The Church’s Engagement with a Wounded World (February 2016 Eerdmans)
Cavanaugh directs the Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology and teaches Catholic Studies at DePaul University. His previous books, Being Consumed: Economics and Christian Desire and Migrations of the Holy: God, State, and the Political Meaning of the Church, have treated timely and important current issues in political theology. This book takes its title from Pope Francis’s metaphor of the Church as a field hospital, seeking to heal the spiritual and material wounds of a world filled with battlefields concerning economic injustice, religious violence, religious freedom, and other matters of life and death. He describes an ethics of solidarity and engagement from within.
Anglican Theological Review, Winter 2016
Don’t miss this issue which is devoted to the themes of economic inequalities, their social and political causes, and the theological significance of economic inequality, with particular attention to the Anglican Communion, but in dialogue with ecumenical conversation partners.
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Just a reminder that Alums retain borrowing privileges with the Bishop Payne Library and can request these as well others in the catalog be sent at no cost. Alums do pay the shipping costs for the books’ return.