Helen Paynter

Routledge Focus Series: Rape Culture, Religion and the Bible

Helen Paynter’s book in the series is Telling Terror in Judges 19: Rape and Reparation for the Levite’s Wife. It was first published in 2020. Helen has been busy and published several more books since: The Bible Doesn’t Tell Me So: Why you don’t have to submit to domestic abuse and coercive control, God of Violence Yesterday – God of Love Today, and Blessed are the Peacemakers: A Biblical Theology of Human Violence. Alongside this, Helen has edited multiple more volumes, all in some way exploring phenomena of violence and religion.

So – that is the series so far! There are more volumes in the pipeline – some in production, some under contract, with several proposals under review. We are proud of what has been published so far and excited about what is to come.

One reason the series is such a joy for us editors – for all the difficult topics it focuses on – is that it is a platform for many positive things: activism, collaboration, support, friendship. Our contributors are connected in multiple ways – as has emerged in some of their reflections over these past weeks of spotlight posts.

Chris Greenough and Caroline Blyth are co-editing a handbook, and Chris, Mmapula Kebaneilwe and I (with Johnathan Jodamus) are co-editors on another big project together, Bible and Violence. Caroline (along with Katie Edwards) is both founding co-editor of the series as well as founding co-director of the Shiloh Project. Barbara Thiede is not only author but (alongside Emily Colgan) now co-editor of the series. Emily is – like Caroline – based in Aotearoa New Zealand where they have collaborated extensively with Miryam Clough and David Tombs, including on a toolkit (available open access on this blog) for accompanying survivors of sexual harm in church settings.

Joachim Kuegler is not only a contributor to the series, he has been a mentor and host to both Mmapula and me at the University of Bamberg during our time as Humboldt fellows. Nancy Tan, meanwhile, has been Visiting Scholar at the University of Leeds, where I work. And Ericka Dunbar presented her work at the Shiloh conference shortly after the Shiloh Project’s inception. Not long after, she gave a keynote at the Circle for Concerned African Theologians’ congress in Botswana, which was co-organised by Mmapula.

Helen Paynter and I have supported each other’s work in multiple ways and we together offer mentoring for researchers working on traumatic topics (see an earlier announcement on this blog). Saima Afzal, Mmapula and I, meanwhile, (together with Emma Tomalin) co-direct a Community Interest Company, SAS Rights, which Saima founded. These various connections and collaborations have been immensely important in a wider academic environment that can sometimes feel inhospitable, precarious, competitive and exhausting.

We’ll report back on the series as new publications are released!

If you would like to discuss or propose a book in the series, please be in touch ([email protected]).

Tags : Helen PaynterRoutledge Focus

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