Elonda Clay, B.S., MLIS, M.Div.,Th.M.

EDUCATION
2015 – present
PhD Candidate, Theology and Religious Studies
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

2005-2007.
Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
Master of Theology
Religion and Science emphasis

2002-2005.
Interdenominational Theological Center
Master of Divinity

1996-1998.
University of Missouri at Columbia
Master of Arts
Library and Information Science

1984-1990.
Kansas State University
Bachelor of Science
Major: Physical Science

AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION AND INTERESTS
Race and Genetics in the Media, Race and the Digital Humanities (digital diasporas and genetic genealogy identities online), Science and Religion, African American Religious and Civic Environmentalism, Religion and Hip Hop

ACADEMIC EMPLOYMENT/TEACHING
January 2014 – June 2015. Philander Smith College, D.W. Reynolds Library and Technology Center, Little Rock, AR
Digital Librarian and Archivist

2011 Spring. Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Course: Advanced Seminar in Religion and Science: Perspectives on Humanity: Evolution, Enhancement, Biotechnology, and Theology.

2010 Spring. Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Course: The Future of Creation: Foundations for a Just and Sustainable World.

2009 Spring. Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Course: The Future of Creation: Foundations for a Just and Sustainable World.

2008. Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. Chicago, IL
International Student Writing Partner, Language Resource and Writing Center.

2006 -2007. Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Graduate Research Assistant: Dr. Monica A. Coleman
Aint I A Womanist Too?: Third Wave Womanist Religious Thought

2003-2005. Technology Liaison, Urban Theological Institute of the Interdenominational Theological Center. Atlanta, GA

2003-2004. Alumni Relations, Membership Database Coordinator, Gammon Theological Seminary. Atlanta, GA

HONORS AND AWARDS
2009 Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC)
Poster/Platform (Oral) Presenter Travel Award
2008-2009 GreenFaith National Fellowship, GreenFaith Interfaith Coalition for the Environment
2005-2008 Fund for Theological Education Doctoral Fellows Program
2005-2008 United Methodist Women of Color Scholarship
2004 Fellow, Summer Leadership Institute, Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts
2003-05 Crusade Scholarship, United Methodist Church, New York
2003-05 Dean’s Superlative Honor’s List (GPA 3.5-4.0) Interdenominational Theological Center, Atlanta, Georgia
2001 Bibliography Award, American Theological Library Association, Chicago, IL
1998-99 National Endowment for the Humanities Collections Care and Maintenance Training Program for Museum Professionals,
University of Missouri – Kansas City

PUBLICATIONS
BOOK CHAPTERS
“We Are What We Archive” In Fabricating Origins, Russell McCutcheon, ed. (Equinox Publishing, 2015).

“#NOWTHATSRELIGIONANDHIPHOP: Religion and Hip Hop in Cyberspace,” in Religion in Hip Hop: Mapping the New Terrain, edited by Monica R. Miller and Anthony B. Pinn
(Bloomsbury Press, 2014).

“Mediated Science, Genetics and Identity in the U.S. African Diaspora” in Media, Spiritualities, and Social Change, Stewart Hoover and Monica Emerich, eds. (London; New York: Continuum Press, 2011).

“How Does It Feel to be an Environmental Problem? Studying Religion and Ecology in the African Diaspora” in Inherited Land: The Changing Grounds of Religion and Ecology, Whitney Bauman, Richard Bohannon, and Kevin O’Brien eds. (Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2011).

ARTICLES
“These Gods Got Swagger: Avatars, Gameplay, and the Digital Performance of Hip Hop Culture in Machinima” Bulletin for the Study of Religion [Online], Volume 40 Number 3 (19 August 2011).

“A Black Theology of Liberation or Legitimation? A Postcolonial Response to Cone’s Black Theology, Black Power at Forty” Black Theology: An International Journal [Equinox], November 2010, 307-326.

“Two Turntables and a Microphone: Turntablism, Ritual, and Implicit Religion” in Culture and Religion [Routledge] Vol. 10, No. 1, March 2009, 23–38.

“Subtle Impact: Technology Trends and the Black Church” Journal of the Interdenominational Theological Center 31: No. 1 & 2 (Fall 2003/Spring 2004), 153-178.

BOOK REVIEWS
Book Review of Daphne C. Wiggins, Righteous Content: Black Women’s Perspectives of Church and Faith. (New York University Press, 2004). The Journal of Religion, Volume 87, Number 3 (July 2007), 443.

PRESENTATIONS
2016
“WTH?!! H8U {People}!! – With Anti-Black Trolling, E-Bile, and Racist Shitstorms, Is a Love Praxis Possible in Mediatized Worlds?” Presentation at American Academy of Religion Conference, San Antonio, Texas, November 2016. Session: Black Theology and Revolutionary Love.

“Conjuring the Diasporic African American Past for the Present: Reality TV Genomics, the Remediation of Collective Memory, and the Hegemonic Hijacking of Black Identities.” Presentation at American Academy of Religion Conference. San Antonio, Texas, November 2016. Co-Sponsored Session: Religion, Media, and Culture Group and Religion, Memory, History Group.

“Is Digital Activism Shifting the Gendered Politics of U.S. Black Struggle? The Increasing Visibility of U.S. African American Women and Same Gender Loving Activists On Social Media.” Presentation at 2016 Consultation of African and African-Diasporan Women in Religion and Theology, Theme: “Say Her Name!: Africana Women as Interpreters, Healers and Revolutionaries.” Spelman College, Atlanta, Georgia, July 2016.

“Digital Activism Workshop I and II.” Workshops facilitated at 2016 Consultation of African and African-Diasporan Women in Religion and Theology, Theme: “Say Her Name!: Africana Women as Interpreters, Healers and Revolutionaries.” Spelman College, Atlanta, Georgia, July 2016.

2015    “Burn This Bitch Down! Protest Space, Apocalyptic Envisioning, and Media Representations of Racial Unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, November 2015. Presentation for the panel, From Post-Apartheid Cape Town to Post-Racial Ferguson: Black Death, Public Protests, and the Recasting of White Shamelessness.

2014    “Backyard Gardens as Sacred Spaces: An Emerging Research Agenda of Spiritual Ecology for Ecowomanism.” American Academy of Religion Conference, San Diego, California, November 2014. Presentation for the panel, Ecowomanism 101: A Roundtable Discussing Vital Themes and Trajectories.

 

2014    “Can Womanist Scholarship Survive Without the Dutiful Daughter Complex? On Genealogies, Waves, and Generational Rifts.” American Academy of Religion Conference, San Diego, California, November 2014. Presentation for the panel, Third Wave Womanism: Mapping the New Terrain of Identity through Discourse.

2013    “Imagineering Geneatopia: Genomic Heterotopias and Biologized Blackness in the PBS African American Lives Series.” Second Annual Ways of Knowing Conference. Science, Religion, and Culture Program at Harvard Divinity School, Boston, Massachusetts, October 2013.

2011    “Consuming Authentic Ancestry: Personal Genomics, Genetic-Ethnic Identities, and the Co-Creation of Genetic Return.” Chicago Consumer Culture Community. DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois, December 2011.

2011    “Your Ancestors are Waiting in Cyberspace! Genealogy, DNA, and Diasporic Mediascapes.” American Academy of Religion Conference, San Francisco, California, November 2011. Presentation for the panel: Reimagining Black Theology after Google.

2010    “The Curious Case of Oprah the Zulu: DNA Ancestry, Celebrity Narratives of Genetic Return, and Motherland Utopias.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, October 2010. Presentation for the panel: Claiming Africa, Claiming the Americas: Religion and Identity in the Diaspora.

2009    “A Black Theology of Liberation or Legitimation? A Neo-Washingtonian Critique of Cone’s Black Theology.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, November. Presentation for the panel: Fortieth Retrospective of James Cone’s Black Theology and Black Power: The Next Forty Years.

2009    “Alice Walker as a Theological, Methodological, and Political Problem for Womanist and Black Theologies.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, November 2009.

2009    “Using Genetics to Overturn The Legacy of Slavery? The Hope and the Hype of Popular Representations of Personal Genomics, U.S. African Americans and Genetic Ancestry Testing.” American Society of Human Genetics 59th Annual Meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii, October 20-24, 2009. Poster Presentation.

2009    “‘Roots’ in a Test Tube: Popular Media Presentations of Genetic Genealogy and Identity in the U.S. African Diaspora.” Personalized Genomics Conference – Genome Canada. Banff, Alberta, Canada, September 2009. Poster Presentation.

2009    “In The End of All Things, A New Beginning: Virtual Apocalyptic Imagination and Evil in Video Games.” Midwest American Academy of Religion, Chicago, Illinois, April 2009.

2009    “From CSI to Gattaca to The Journey of Man: Genetics, Identity and Media Presentations of Science.” Faith and Science Lecture, Evangelical Lutheran Church of America Regional Office, Chicago, Illinois, February 2009.

2008    “Sims in the Hands of a Gaming God: God Games and Theories of the Apocalyptic.” The Seventh International Association of Cultural Studies Crossroads Conference. Kingston, Jamaica, July 2008.

Presentations on Teaching, Mentoring, and Professional Development

2014    Plenary Speaker, What Administrators Need to Know about Racial Ethnic Students: Restructuring the Academy for Success.” Association of Theological Schools (ATS) Student Personnel Administrators’ Conference, Orlando, Florida, April 2014.

2014    “From Advisor = Mentor to Color Matching: Questioning Common Assumptions About Mentoring in Religious Studies and Theology.” American Academy of Religion Conference, San Diego, California, November 2014.

2013    Panel Organizer and Presider, “Cultivating Leadership for the New Academy and Civic Engagement: Interrogating Leadership Skills, Styles, and Contexts.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, November 2013.

2013    Panel Organizer and Presider, “New Paradigms in Evolving Learning Contexts: Navigating Changes in Teaching Religion and Theology.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, November 2013. Co-sponsored by Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning.

2013    Panel Speaker, “Reflections From the Future of the Field.” Fund for Theological Education Consultation on Doctoral Education. Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis, Indiana, April 2013.

Panels Organized

2016    THATCamp AAR Session Organizer: “Responding To Cyberhate – A Critical Digital Pedagogy.” American Academy of Religion Conference. San Antonio, Texas, November 2016.

2015    “From Post-Apartheid Cape Town to Post-Racial Ferguson: Black Death, Public Protests, and the Recasting of White Shamelessness.” Session organizer and moderator. American Academy of Religion Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, November 2015.

2013    THATCamp AAR Session Organizer: “Race, Religion, and the Digital Humanities.” American Academy of Religion Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, November 2013.

Invited Talks

2013    Invited Panelist, “Shifting Sands of the Academy: Examining Trends in Higher Education”, American Academy of Religion Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, November 2013.

2012    Invited Speaker for Jesse B. Semple Brown Bag. “Know Your Genes, Meet Your Ancestors, Reunite Your Roots!”: The Selling of DNA Ancestry Testing” Langston Hughes Cultural Center, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas, March 2012.

OTHER PROFESSIONAL POSITIONS HELD
2001-2002 Web Applications Coordinator, Kansas City, Kansas Public Library. Kansas City, KS.
1999-2002 Cybersity New Media Consulting, Information Consulting and Web Development. Kansas City, MO
1998-1999 Special Projects Consultant, Digitization Project. Black Archives of Mid-America. Kansas City, MO.
1997-98 Museum Collections and Resource Specialist, The American Jazz Museum. Kansas City, MO
1996-97 Graduate Assistant, Ellis Library, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO. Duties: Retrospective conversion
of library materials published before 1900.

COMMUNITY SERVICE
2007-2011 Blacks In Green (Community-Based Environmental Organization) Board Member, Chicago, Illinois,
2004-2005 Womanist Virtual Community Volunteer, Black Women in Church and Society Program at the Interdenominational Theological Center, Atlanta, Georgia.
2003 Archival Research Volunteer, Religious Heritage of the African World (R.H.A.W.), Atlanta, Georgia.
2002-2003 Training volunteer, ITC Health Education Leadership Project (H.E.L.P.), an HIV/AIDS prevention project created for African American churches and communities, Atlanta, Georgia.
2000-2001 Career Enrichment Mentor for At-Risk Youth, ETRAD Inc. Community Development Corporation, Kansas City, Missouri.
1998-99 Community Technology Tutor and Trainer, W. E. B. DuBois Learning Center, Kansas City, Missouri.

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS
American Academy of Religion
American Theological Library Association
American Society for Human Genetics
International Society for Religion, Nature, and Culture
Zygon Center for the Study of Religion and Science
Association for Cultural Studies