Congratulations to Dr. Emily Holmes, Associate Professor of Religion, who was recently honored by CBU’s National Alumni Board with the 2016 Teaching Excellence Award. The award is given in recognition of Dr. Holmes’s commitment to her students and the craft of teaching, and for her thought-provoking engagement within her field of study in relation to the local community.
Dr. Holmes’ research interests include medieval theology and mysticism, women’s writing practices, feminist theory and theology, and food ethics and the spirituality of eating. She has published articles and chapters in a variety of journals and books, and is the author of Flesh Made Word: Medieval Women Mystics, Writing, and the Incarnation (2013); the co-editor of Breathing with Luce Irigaray (2013); and the co-editor of Women, Writing, Theology: Transforming a Tradition of Exclusion (2011). She has received grants from the Louisville Institute, the CBU Faculty-Staff Development Fund, and the Lindsay Young Fellowship at the University of Tennessee, and was a fellow of the American Academy of Religion/Luce Summer Seminars in Theologies of Religious Pluralism and Comparative Theology (2009-2010). Dr. Holmes is the network editor for feminist theology at Religious Studies Review and served as co-chair of the Women and Religion section of the Southeastern Commission for the Study of Religion (SECSOR) from 2007-2010. She recently edited a special issue of the Journal of Theology & Sexuality on the theme of maternality, and published a chapter, “Feminism: Gendered Bodies and Religion,” in Embodied Religion: Bodies, Sex and Sexuality volume, edited by Kent L. Brintnall (Macmillan, 2016). She is currently developing a theology of food justice.
At CBU, Dr. Holmes teaches courses in World Religions, Christian Spirituality, the History of Christian Thought, and Catholicism and Other Faith Traditions. She has developed new courses including Women and Christianity and Spirituality and Ethics of Eating. Her religion courses are interdisciplinary and experiential in approach, drawing on Dr. Holmes’s strengths in theology, philosophy, and literature, as well as her personal and professional interests in religious diversity, spirituality, and food ethics. Dr. Holmes is faculty advisor to the CBU Gay Straight Alliance. In 2010, she received the New Advisor Award. She has served on the Vanderhaar Symposium committee; chaired the Faculty Assembly Policy Committee from 2012-2015; and chaired the CBU Safe Zones Committee from 2013-2014. As a member of the Faculty Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees, she developed the CBU Philosophy of Compensation in 2015. She currently chairs the newly-formed CBU Food Committee.
Dr. Holmes served on the board of GrowMemphis from 2013-2016 and now serves as a charter board member of Memphis Tilth, a non-profit collective housing like-missioned initiatives for land, food, people, and place. She also serves on the Christian Education committee of First Congregational Church and is the Community Garden Leader of Peabody Elementary School.
Dr. Holmes joined the Religion and Philosophy faculty at CBU in 2008. She holds degrees from Emory University (Ph.D. 2008), Harvard University (M.T.S. 1999), University of Cambridge (M.Phil. 1998), and Tulane University (B.A. 1996).