Dr. Ron Neal

Portrait of Ron Neal, Faculty of Religious Studies

Associate Professor

Office: 305 Divinity and Religious Studies Building

Phone: 336.758.4092

Email: nealrb@nullwfu.edu

  • Bio

    Ronald B. Neal is an Associate Professor in the Department for the Study of Religions at Wake Forest University. He holds a Ph.D. in Religion from Vanderbilt University. He is the author of Democracy in 21st Century America: Race, Class, Religion, and Region (Mercer University Press, 2012). Professor Neal is a theorist of religion and culture whose primary area of teaching and research is African American Religious Studies. He also does teaching and research in other areas including world religions, religion and popular culture, religion and political culture, and gender studies in religion. He is currently writing a book on Black Masculinity, Myth, and the Western Imagination.

  • Education and CV

    Ph.D. Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, Religion, Ethics, and Culture, 2004

    M.Div. Interdenominational Theological Center/Atlanta, GA, 1998

    B.A. Florida International University, Miami, Fl, Anthropology/Sociology, 1995

  • Publications

    PUBLICATIONS

    Book

    Democracy in 21st Century America: Race, Class, Religion, and Region, Mercer University Press, 2012

    Book Chapters

    It’s Deeper Than Rap: Hip Hop, the South, and Abrahamic Masculinity,forthcoming essay in Ain’t I a Womanist Too!: Third Wave Womanist Thought. Fortress Press, 2012

    Race, Class, and the Traumatic Legacy of Southern Masculinity, forthcoming chapter in Southern Silences. Peter Lang Publishers, 2012

    Book Reviews

    Erotic Revolutionaries: Black Women, Sexuality, and Popular Culture, Shayne Lee, Journal of African American Studies, June 2012

    Representations of Homosexuality: Black Liberation Theology and Cultural Criticism, Roger A. Sneed, Black Theology: An International Journal, Equinox Publishers August, 2012

    Cornel West and the Politics of Prophetic Pragmatism, Mark David Wood, The A.M.E. Church Review, April-June 2003

    Articles

    Savior of the Race: The Messianic Burdens of Black Masculinity, Brill Journal/Exchange, (forthcoming, 2013

    When the Demons Speak!: A Response to Roger A. Sneed’s Representations of Homosexuality: Black Liberation Theology and Cultural Criticism, Black Theology: An International Journal Equinox Publishers (forthcoming, 2012)

    Beyond Fundamentalism: Reconstructing African American Religious Thought, an article published in the Journal of Race, Ethnicity, and Religion, July 2010

    Man Up: Hip, Religion, Masculine Work, an article published in the Journal of Black Masculinity, September 2011

    Democracy, Difference, and Reconstruction: Religion, Theology, and the Spirit of Pragmatism, article published inReligion Compass Journal, November 2011

    Engaging Abrahamic Masculinity: Race, Religion, and the Measure of Manhood, article published in CrossCurrents Journal, December 2011

    Essays

    RIP: The Myth of the Black Church, Religion Dispatches, March 18, 2010, www.religiondispatches.org

    Did Progressive Christianity Dump Its Savior in Brad Braxton?, Religion Dispatches, July 20, 2009, www.religiondispatches.org

    Papers/Presentations/Panels

    When Demons Speak: Black Theology, Cultural Criticism, and the Voices of Demonized Black Men, a paper delivered at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Religion. It was a part of a session sponsored by the Black Theology Group: Invisible Lives: A Critical Conversation on Roger A. Sneed’s Representations of Homosexuality: Black Liberation Theology and Cultural Criticism, November 20, 2011.

    Spike Lee Can Go to Hell: Tyler Perry, Religion, and Southern Masculinity, a paper delivered at the Annual Meeting of the American Studies Association in Baltimore, Maryland, October 20, 2011.

    Diasporas and Cultures of Migration, Universite Paul Valery Montpellier 3 Salle Camproux, Session Chair for “Masculinities” section, June 20-23 2011, Montpellier, France

    Masculine Work: Engaging Hip Hop, Masculinity, and Religion, A public lecture delivered at Wake Forest University, Sponsored by the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, January 27, 2011

    Coptic Studies Conference, respondent to papers on The Future of Coptic Studies: Theories, Methodologies, and Subjects, Wake Forest University, September 17, 2010

    Pedagogy and Hope: Teaching Race, Religion, and Politics in an Obama Era Classroom, a paper delivered at the Center for Teaching and Scholarly Excellence, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY, March 17, 2010

    It’s Deeper Than Rap: Hip Hop, Masculinity, and Religion, a paper delivered at Ain’t I a Womanist Too: Third Wave Womanist Religious Thought Conference, Claremont School of Theology, Claremont California, February 25-27, 2010

    Daring to Dream Again: Ethical Idealism and 21st Century America, a public lecture delivered at the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies at Davidson College, Davidson, NC, October 29, 2008.

    The New Jim Crow and the Reconstruction of Christian Ethics, a paper delivered at the Society for the Study of Black Religion, March 6-8 2008, Charleston, SC

    The Dilemmas of Spirit Possession and Jesus Consciousness in the African-American Religious Experience, a paper delivered at the Charles Copher Faculty Lectures, in honor of Dr. Riggins R. Earl, Jr., the Interdenominational Theological Center, April 26, 2006

    Teaching Religion in South Carolina, a paper delivered at the Southeastern Conference for the Study of Religion, March 11, 2006, Atlanta, GA

    In the Image of Jim Crow: Public Education in 21st Century America and the Public Witness of Benjamin Elijah Mays, a paper delivered at the Southeastern Conference for the Study of Religion, March 10, 2005, Winston-Salem, NC

  • Courses
    • REL 101: Introduction to Religion
    • REL 345: African-American Religious Experience
    • REL 373: Special Topics in African-American Religious Traditions
    • REL 374: Black Messiahs and Uncle Toms
    • REL 375: Race, Myth, and the American Imagination
    • REL 376: Race, Religion, and Film.