Kristin Kobes Du Mez


Kristin Du Mez

Education

  • B.A., History and German, Dordt College
  • Ph.D., American History, specialties in women's history and religious history, University of Notre Dame

Biography

“I grew up in a small town in northwest Iowa, with a brief stint in Tallahassee, Florida, during my high school years. I then spent a year in Germany as an exchange student before returning to Iowa to attend Dordt College. After graduate school at the University of Notre Dame I spent time at Williams College and at the Five College Women’s Studies Research Center at Mt. Holyoke, before taking up a position here at Calvin. I spend much of my time writing when I’m not wrangling my three kids.”

Kristin Du Mez teaches courses in US women’s history and US social and cultural history, and has enjoyed working with students on historical walking tours of Grand Rapids for the GR Walks app. Topics have included an East Grand Rapids walking tour of Ramona Park, a downtown Grand Rapids historical river walk, and a historical walking tour of beer in Grand Rapids.

Academic interests

Kristin Du Mez’s research areas focus on the intersections of gender, religion, and politics in recent American history. Her first book, A New Gospel for Women: Katharine Bushnell and the Challenge of Christian Feminism, was published by Oxford University Press in May, 2015. The book traces the remarkable life and innovative theology of Katharine Bushnell (1855-1946), an intrepid social reformer and anti-trafficking activist. 

Her current project, Onward Christian Warriors, is a study of evangelical masculinity and militarism in recent American history. It will be published in early 2020 with Norton’s Liveright Publishing. After the completion of this project, she will return to her religious history of Hillary Clinton—Journey of Faith: Hillary Clinton and the Polarization of American Christianity. (She has written on this topic at Religion and Politicsthe Anxious Bench, and in the Washington Post).

For additional information, see kristindumez.com

Publications

Selected articles and book chapters
  • “Katharine Bushnell’s God’s Word to Women: Theology and Social Reform in Victorian America,” inFinding Themselves: Women and the Bible in the Nineteenth Century. (Volume in The Bible and Women: An Encyclopaedia of Exegesis and Cultural History)
  • “Reorienting American Religious History: The Case of Katharine Bushnell,” in American Evangelicalism: George Marsden and the Shape of American Religious History, edited by Darren Dochuk, Thomas S. Kidd, and Kurt W. Peterson. University of Notre Dame Press, 2014.
  • “Selfishness One Degree Removed: Madeline Southard’s Desacralization of Motherhood and a Tradition of Progressive Methodism,” Priscilla Papers 28, no. 2 (Spring 2014): 17-22.    
  • “Katharine Bushnell” and “Lee Anna Starr,” in Biographical History of Women Biblical Interpreters. Baker Academic Press, 2012.
  • “Leaving Eden: Resurrecting the Work of Katharine Bushnell and Lee Anna Starr,” in Breaking Boundaries: Female Biblical Interpreters who Challenged the Status Quo. T&T Clark, 2010.

Read Kristin Du Mez's posts on Historical Horizons, the history department blog. Du Mez also blogs at Patheos’ Anxious Bench.

Additional publications, including popular articles and blog posts, can be found at https://kristindumez.com/writing/

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