My research.


I'm working on two books about hope - one on my own, the other co-authored - and I coordinate an international research project on atheism. I also have an ongoing interest in secularismsexuality, neoliberalismlove, and the intersection of theory and art.

 
 

Hope in a Secular Age: Deconstruction, Negative Theology, and the Future of Faith

My first book (forthcoming from CUP) defends a hope that acknowledges its vulnerability but presses forward nonetheless. Where critics claim that hope pacifies political resistance by providing false comfort, I argue that it nourishes a restless dissatisfaction with the status quo. Drawing upon premodern negative theology and postmodern philosophy, I show that an uncertain hope is necessary to sustain commitment of any kind: interpersonal, political, or religious.

 

Atheism and Christianity: Moving Past Polemic

I lead an ongoing research project on the topic of atheism, which includes eight other scholars of religion and philosophy from ACU, KU Leuven, and Yale. Although the debate over religion is generally polemical, we believe that sophisticated forms of atheism and Christian thought share much in common. With a wide group of international collaborators, we aim to explore this middle space from the perspective of genealogy, phenomenology, and political theology.

 

Can Hope Combat Marginalization?

Together with Vincent Lloyd and Linn Tonstad, I am writing a book that responds to critiques of hope in Black, queer, and continental thought. There is reason to worry that hope distracts from addressing the challenges faced by marginalized communities. Although Christian reflection on hope is not always attuned to this danger, it suggests that hope may also combat marginalization. Our book stages a conversation between these fields in order to clarify how hope may respond to injustice.