Position Type
Faculty
Service
- Present
Other Affiliations
Biography

Dr. Kotrosits brings to the Religion department her expertise in socio-cultural approaches to the ancient Mediterranean, specifically Christianity and Judaism within it. Addressing diasporic and colonial social forms, practices, and experiences in both ancient and modern worlds, Dr. Kotrosits additionally bring expertise in affect theory and constructions of the body and sexuality. Her first book, Rethinking Early Christian Identity: Affect, Violence, and Belonging (2015) approached ancient Christian literature as responses to the diaspora conditions and broad colonial violence of the Roman empire. Her second book, The Lives of Objects: Material Culture, Experience, and the Real in the History of Early Christianity (University of Chicago Press, June 2020) addresses the way people across time and geography grapple with the politics of social upheaval and displacement, and the materiality of life and death. It reorients readers to the socio-cultural world of the ancient Mediterranean, and ancient Christianity and Judaism within it, and asks: What matters, what counts as “real,” in the writing of history?

She has lectured and presented at universities across the U.S., as well as in Europe and Canada. She has published in a range of top journals across fields, including The Journal of the History of Sexuality, Culture and Religion, the Journal of the American Academy of Religion, the Journal of Early Christian Studies, Studies in Gender and Sexuality.

Degree(s)
BA in Creative Writing, Binghamton University (2000); MDiv, MPhil, PhD, Union Theological Seminary in New York City (2008, 2012, 2013)

Learning & Teaching

Courses
  • Pain, Healing and the Body
  • Racial Politics and National Belonging in Early Christianity
  • Travel Course to Greece
  • Thinking About Religion (Method and Theory in the Study of Religion)
  • Bible, Gender, Sexuality
  • Creation Narratives and Power Relations
  • Introduction to the Bible
  • Revelation: Reading, Writing, and the End

Research

Dr. Kotrosits' work analyzes the ancient literature and practices associated with Christianity as windows into the practices and experiences of non-dominant populations across the Mediterranean.
Details

Dr. Kotrosits has been on the leading edge of antiquity and biblical studies. Her book Rethinking Early Christian Identity (Fortress, 2015) was the first in the field to bring diaspora theory to bear on the social history of early Christianity, and she has offered substantial contributions to conversations across the fields of anthropology, literary studies, gender and sexuality studies, cultural studies, and more. Her forthcoming book borrows from psychoanalytic theory, critical race theory, and queer theory to intervene in the materialist and new materialist turns across these various fields.

Works

Publications

Monographs

  • The Lives of Objects: Material Culture, Experience, and the Real in the History of Christianity (forthcoming, University of Chicago Press, Class 200 Series, June 2020)
  • “How Things Feel: Biblical Studies, Affect Theory, and the (Im)Personal,” Research Perspectives in Biblical Interpretation 1.1 (2016)
  • Rethinking Early Christian Identity: Affect, Violence, and Belonging. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2015.

Reviews

  • Christopher Frilingos The Journal of Religion and Violence Vol. 4, Issue 3 (2017): 391-393.
  • Robert Paul Seesengood The Bible and Critical Theory Vol. 13, no. 1 (2017): 91-98.
  • Jennifer Glancy Journal of Early Christian Studies Vol. 24, no. 2 (Summer 2016): 305-306.
  • Forum with responses by Donovan Schaefer, Eric Smith, Teresa Calpino, and Shayna Sheinfeld, Ancient Jew Review, January 2019.

Articles, Essays, and Book Chapters (peer-reviewed)

  • “Tertullian of Carthage and the Fantasy Life of Power: On Martyrs, Christians, and Other Attachments to Disciplinary Scenes.” With Carly Daniel-Hughes (Journal of Early Christian Studies, forthcoming, Spring 2020).
  • “Penetration and Its Discontents: Greco-Roman Sexuality, The Acts of Paul and Thecla, and Theorizing Eros Without the Wound,” Journal of the History of Sexuality 27:3 (September 2018).
  • “Speaking of Grief and the Grief of Speaking: Martyrs’ Speech and the Perils of Translation,” Culture and Religion Vol. 17, no. 4 (2017): 441-439.
  • “Sovereignty in Ruins: The Death of Ignatius and Ecologies of Destruction” Forum 6.1 (Spring 2017): 79-95.
  • “Queer Persistence: On Death, History, and Longing for Endings,” Sexual Disorientations: Queer Temporalities, Affects, Theologies. New York: Fordham University Press, 2016.
  • “Babylon’s Fall: Figuring Diaspora in and through Ruins,” Bible and Critical Theory Vol. 11, no. 2 (2015): 1-17.
  • “When History Vindicates: On the Historian’s Frustration,” invited response to Burton Mack’s A Myth of Innocence, Journal of the American Academy of Religion Vol. 83, no. 3 (September 2015): 841-845.
  • “Social Fracture and Cosmic Rhetoric: Interpretations of Isaiah in the Nag Hammadi Codices,” Forum 4.2 (Fall, 2015).
  • “Seeing is Feeling: Revelation’s Enthroned Lamb and Ancient Visual Affects,” Biblical Interpretation Vol. 22, no. 4 (Fall 2014): 473-502.
  • “The Queer Life of Christian Exceptionalism,” Culture and Religion Vol. 15, no. 2 (June 2014): 158-165.
  • “Uncertain Futures: Institutional Brokenness and Other Quandaries of Feminist Belonging,” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion Vol. 29, no. 2 (Fall 2013): 131-138.
  • “National Brokenness and Belonging,” “Blood Relations: Pain and the Social Body,” and “Visions of the End,” in Re-reading the Gospel of Mark Amidst Loss and Trauma. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.
  • “The Ekklesia and the Politics of the Meal: Re-thinking ‘Christian Identity’ in and through Acts,” in Mahl und religiöse Identität im frühen Christentum eds. Matthias Klinghardt and Hal Taussig, 241-278. Tanz Verlag (2012).
  • “Romance and Danger at Nag Hammadi” The Bible and Critical Theory Vol. 8, no. 1 (March 2012): 39-52.
  • “The Rhetoric of Intimate Spaces: Affect and Performance in the Corinthian Correspondence” Union Seminary Quarterly Review Vol. 62, no. 3-4: 134-151.
  • The Thunder: Perfect Mind: A New Translation and Introduction, with Hal Taussig, Jared Calaway, Justin Lasser, and Celene Lillie. Palgrave Macmillan, 2010. (Contributed 3 chapters on Gender, Identity, and Violence respectively)
  • “Re-reading Canonical Identity: A Sexual Ethics of Bible Interpretation” Studies in Gender and Sexuality Vol. 11, issue 2 (April 2010): 89-100.

Book Reviews

  • Ancient Christian Ecopoetics: Cosmologies, Saints, Things. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania (2018). Ancient Historical Bulletin (forthcoming).
  • Coming to Our Senses: Affect and An Order of Things for Global Culture New York: Columbia University Press (2016) by Dierdra Reber. Bible and Critical Theory 14.1 (2018)
  • T&T Clark Handbook to Social Identity in the New Testament New York: Bloomsbury T&T Clark (2014). Edited by J. Brian Tucker and Coleman A. Baker. Religious Studies Review Vol. 42, no. 3. (September, 2016): 207-208.
  • Paul and the Politics of Diaspora Minneapolis: Fortress Press (2014) by Ronald Charles. Toronto Journal of Theology Vol. 31, no. 2 (Fall 2015): 278-279.
  • Essen als Christusgläubige: Ritualtheoretische Exegese paulinischer Texte Francke Verlag (2011) by Soham Al-Suadi. Religious Studies Review 38.4 (December 2012): 240.

Service

Professional Memberships
  • American Academy of Religion
  • Society of Biblical Literature
  • Cultural Studies Association
  • Canadian Society of Biblical Studies
  • North American Patristics Society

Other

Grants & Funding

SSHRC Insight Grant, in collaboration with Philip Harland (York University) “Ethnicity, Diaspora, and Ethnographic Culture in the Greco-Roman World” (2019-2024, $95,000)

Honors & Awards

Lillian Robinson Speaker Prize, Simone de Beauvoir Institute, Concordia University (for Spring 2020): “Geographies of the Body: Ethnicity, Race, and Gynecological Medicine in Ancient and Contemporary Worlds.”

Mentions