Monday February 22, 2021 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. EST
White Christian Privilege - A Discussion with Dr. Khyati Y. Joshi
On February 22nd, CCIU hosted a live, in-depth and thought-provoking conversation with Dr. Khyati Y. Joshi about her recent book, White Christian Privilege - The Illusion of Religious Equality in America, moderated by Hartford Seminary President and CCIU Board member Dr. Joel N. Lohr. The event, attended by more than 150 people, took place via Zoom.
About Dr. Joshi
Dr. Khyati Y. Joshi is a scholar and thought leader on the intersecting issues of race, religion and immigration in the United States. Her writings, speeches, and course work focus on promoting cultural and religious pluralism in the United States.
Appearing recently on MSNBC's The Beat with Ari Melber, Live with Cory Booker and the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding, Dr. Joshi challenges us to think critically about the intersections of religion and race in America.
Through her workshops and consulting, Dr. Joshi engages educators, policy-makers, and community leaders in an examination of the historical and systemic nature of bias, its consequences in everyday life, and the solutions that foster social justice and inclusiveness. In doing so, she provides clients with the tools to enhance both their own and their organizations' ability to provide inclusive, meaningful services and experiences in an increasingly connected and diverse world.
Professor Joshi’s research and scholarly work taps the experiences of South Asian Americans and other immigrant communities to illuminate race relations and inform interfaith work in the United States. She is an author, editor, and contributor to numerous ground-breaking books and journals in her field.
About White Christian Privilege - The Illusion of Religious Equality in America
Christianity’s overwhelming social power shapes America today, even when religious discrimination is mistaken for racism or obscured in debates over immigration or national identity. The United States’ most powerful and enduring myth is that it was created as a haven of religious freedom for all, and that the First Amendment makes people of all faiths, and of no faith, genuinely equal before the law.
It is time for the world’s most religiously-diverse nation to understand that, in fact, Christian privilege has always been embedded in U.S. policy, politics, and society’s rules and assumptions about who belongs and who doesn’t. Drawing upon her decades of research and teaching, and on the literature in legal studies, history, sociology, religion, ethnic studies, and education, Khyati Y. Joshi maps the origins of Christian privilege and the entwinement of Christianity and Whiteness in American national identity. She traces these phenomena from their European orientalist roots, to the American colonial era and Westward expansion, through 19th-century immigration and citizenship policies, to present-day social movements. Using the voices of Christians and religious minorities, Joshi explores the effects of Christian privilege and White racial norms on how all sorts of Americans live religion in the present day. In doing so, she poses and begins to answer the most urgent question Americans may face today: How to become a "more perfect union" – a religiously pluralistic democracy that leaves White Christian supremacy behind.
About Dr. Lohr
Joel N. Lohr is the President of Hartford Seminary, a leading interfaith graduate school. He is an award-winning author, scholar of religion, and passionate leader in interreligious relations and higher education. Born to Dutch immigrants in Canada,
Lohr is a first-generation college graduate, earning a BA in Religious Studies (Trinity Western University, Vancouver, Canada) and an MA and Ph.D. in Religion and Theology (University of Durham, England). He then took up a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Toronto and taught at Wycliffe College, a seminary within the Anglican Church of Canada. He has held teaching appointments at Trinity Western University in Vancouver, Canada and more recently at University of the Pacific in Stockton, CA, where he also served as Dean of Religious Life.
Lohr’s teaching and research has focused on the Bible, specifically the Torah/Pentateuch, as well as Jewish-Christian relations and dialogue, Interreligious Dialogue, and Leadership in Higher Education. He has published ten books with publishers that are both academic (Oxford, Brill, Eisenbrauns, Purdue) and popular (Zondervan, Oneworld, Baker Academic, and Abingdon). His work has been noted not only for its academic strength but also interfaith ingenuity.
To purchase a copy of White Christian Privilege
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