A Christian Scholar's Journey from America to Africa. Christianity's demographics, vitality, and influence have tipped markedly toward the global South and East. Addressing this seismic shift, noted Christian literary scholar Susan VanZanten recounts how her focus has shifted from American to African literature, leading her to advocate for a global approach to education and scholarship. Reading a Different Story recounts her journey of reorientation, reflects on the challenges of being a Christian woman scholar, and shows how the rise of global Christianity necessitates changes in academic life.
"This engaging intellectual autobiography is a rare treat for anyone pondering what it means to be a Christian scholar and teacher in the twenty-first century. It offers no vague generalizations. Rather, VanZanten has crafted clear-eyed, generous, and wise reflections on her journey into this vocation--from the intertwined blessings and challenges of her Dutch Reformed roots, through the liberating effects and pitfalls of collegiate and graduate study, to experience in an ecumenical range of Christian higher education. The dominant connecting theme is the value of learning to hear the voice of the 'other,' particularly those outside the North Atlantic context." --Randy L. Maddox, William Kellon Quick Professor of Wesleyan and Methodist Studies, Duke Divinity School
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