Academic journal article Journal of Biblical Literature

The JBL Forum, an Occasional Exchange

Academic journal article Journal of Biblical Literature

The JBL Forum, an Occasional Exchange

Article excerpt

Black Lives Matter for Critical Biblical Scholarship

In his 2014 presidential address to the Society of Biblical Literature, Fernando Segovia called for "a fusion of the critical and the political, the biblical and the worldly" (JBL 134.1 [2015]: 6). Segovia was not the first to do so; Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza had done the same in her 1987 address. Indeed, the question of how the Journal, and the field, should relate to the world outside the academy has been debated since the Journal's inception in 1881 (see "Editor's Foreword: The Journal of Biblical Literature and the Critical Investigation of the Bible," JBL 134.3 [2015]: 457-70).

The events leading to #BlackLivesMatter and #SayHerName, such as the killings of Trayvon Martin (Miami, February 2012), Rekia Boyd (Chicago, March 2012), Michael Brown (Ferguson, August 2014), Freddy Gray (Baltimore, April 2015), Tanisha Anderson (Cleveland, June 2015), Sandra Bland (Hempstead, Texas, July 2015), Korryn Gaines (Baltimore, August 2016), among many others, have been felt deeply both inside and outside the United States. …

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