views updated

Haynes, Stephen R. 1958-

PERSONAL:

Born July 2, 1958. Education: Vanderbilt University, B.A., 1980; Florida State University, M.A., 1985; Columbia Theological Seminary, M.Div. (with distinction), 1988; Emory University, Ph.D., 1989; also studied at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, 1980-81; Rice University, 1985-86.

ADDRESSES:

Office—Religious Studies Department, Rhodes College, 2000 N. Parkway, Memphis, TN 38112-1690. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Rice University, Houston, TX, religious studies department, teaching assistant, 1985-86; Emory University, Atlanta, GA, department of religion, teaching associate, 1987-88; St. Chad's College, University of Durham, Durham, England, Centre for the Study of Literature and Theology, research fellow, 1988-89; Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, GA, visiting professor of continuing education, 1992; Rhodes College, Memphis, TN, assistant professor of religious studies, 1989-95, associate professor of religious studies, 1995—, Albert B. Curry Chair of Religious Studies, 1997—; Idlewild Presbyterian Church, Memphis, parish associate; frequent presenter at academic conferences.

MEMBER:

Facing History and Ourselves (regional advisory board member), U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council (church relations committee member).

WRITINGS:

Prospects for Post-Holocaust Theology, Scholars Press (Atlanta, GA), 1991.

(Editor, with Steven L. McKenzie) To Each Its Own Meaning: An Introduction to Biblical Criticisms and Their Application, Westminster John Knox Press (Louisville, KY), 1993, revised and expanded edition, 1999.

Reluctant Witnesses: Jews and the Christian Imagination, Westminster John Knox Press (Louisville, KY), 1995.

Holocaust Education and the Church-Related College: Restoring Ruptured Traditions, foreword by Franklin H. Littell, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 1997.

(Editor, with John K. Roth) The Death of God Movement and the Holocaust: Radical Theology Encounters the Shoah, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 1999.

(Editor) Professing in the Postmodern Academy: Faculty and the Future of Church-Related Colleges, Baylor University Press (Waco, TX), 2002.

Noah's Curse: The Biblical Justification of American Slavery, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 2002.

The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon: Portraits of a Protestant Saint, Fortress Press (Minneapolis, MN), 2004.

The Bonhoeffer Legacy: Post-Holocaust Perspectives, Fortress Press (Minneapolis, MN), 2006.

Contributor of chapters to various books. Contributor to journals, including Perspectives in Religious Studies, Mind and Nature, Christian-Jewish Relations, Religious Education, Modern Churchman, Journal of Literature and Theology, Journal of Ecumenical Studies, and Religion and Literature.

SIDELIGHTS:

Born July 2, 1958, Stephen R. Haynes was educated at Vanderbilt University, earning his bachelor's degree in psychology in 1980. He contin- ued his education at Florida State University where he obtained a master's in humanities and religion, and then attended the Columbia Theological Seminary, taking his master's of divinity with distinction in 1988. Haynes completed his education in 1989, earning his doctorate in theology and hermeneutics from Emory University. Over the course of his career, Haynes has taught at a number of institutions, including Rice University, Emory University, St. Chad's College, University of Durham, and the Columbia Theological Seminary, before joining the faculty of Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee, where he became the Albert B. Curry Chair of Religious Studies. His primary areas of research and academic interest include the Holocaust, religion and racism, and religion and literature, as well as Jewish-Christian relationships, religion and higher education, and the work of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. In addition to his academic duties, he is a frequent contributor to a range of periodicals, including Perspectives in Religious Studies, Mind and Nature, Christian-Jewish Relations, Religious Education, Modern Churchman, Journal of Literature and Theology, Journal of Ecumenical Studies, and Religion and Literature. Haynes is the author and/or editor of a number of books on the Holocaust, religion, and the relationship between religion and higher education.

Reluctant Witnesses: Jews and the Christian Imagination takes a look at anti-Semitism and the ways in which Christians view Jews, both in reality and in their imaginations. It is his stance that the relationship between Christians and Jews is actually more than simply damaging as a result of anti-Semitic feelings. He states that beyond that issue, he believes that there is actually a mythical complex that is responsible for both the animosity and any ambivalence they might feel toward each other. He refers to the phenomenon as the "witness-people myth," and it states that although the Jews killed Christ, they should continue to exist, as it will be their jobs to bear witness to the moment when true Christians are welcomed into Jesus' arms and lose track of anything beyond love and acceptance. Ellen M. Umansky, writing for the Journal of Ecumenical Studies, commented that "while Haynes offers no easy solutions to the problematic nature of the witness-people myth, his work powerfully shows that this thinking has been too central to Christian theology to be ignored."

In Noah's Curse: The Biblical Justification of American Slavery, Haynes addresses the curse that Noah brought down on his son Ham in the Book of Genesis, regarding the fate of his descendents, who were doomed to live their lives as slaves. Haynes uses the example of Benjamin Palmer, the founder of Rhodes College where Haynes teaches, whom he regards as somewhat paradoxical given his apparent adherence to education and Christian values as is supported by the existence of the school, which stands in direct contrast to Palmer's own support of un-Christian-like institutions such as slavery, and horrors such as genocide. Haynes argues against the idea that the Bible actually condones slavery, despite the story of Noah. Noah is often believed to be just because of his righteousness and overall goodness, while Ham has demonstrated himself capable of committing terrible acts. This alone, however, does not make one man good and the other evil. Using the example of Palmer, he notes that while the man founded an excellent school that keeps religious convictions, he himself did not personally represent that same level of goodness, because he had allowed himself to interpret life through his earlier understanding of that scene with Noah. Dexter E. Callender, in a contribution for the Review of Biblical Literature, remarked of Haynes that "he demonstrates the extent to which texts both influence and are influenced by society. Further, his study highlights the tension between historical-critical analysis and modern methods concerned with the nature of the interpretive act, while demonstrating the need for both. This dynamic should remain a focal point for scholarly activity." Laurie Maffly-Kipp, in a review for the Christian Century, observed that "Haynes's study provides a thorough and rich sense of the interpretive history of this scriptural story." Theological Studies reviewer Joseph E. Capizzi dubbed Haynes's effort "a careful and important book that deserves wide study."

The Bonhoeffer Legacy: Post-Holocaust Perspectives is the story of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, an important theologian and leader in the Protestant church, and his relationship to Christianity in the wake of the Holocaust. Haynes reveals the way in which Bonhoeffer developed from the time of the war. At first, Bonhoeffer was fairly reserved about his opinions, but sufficiently candid that Haynes is able to include war-time theories about Jews and their treatment. He intimated that religious Jews were suffering for the sin of having sent Christ to the cross, while also stating that the answer to what Hitler referred to as the Jewish problem was actually to start converting Jews to Christianity. He maintained that, contrary to what the Nazis preached, it was not blood or heritage that made a Jew, but simply the conviction with which they held onto their faith. As the years passed, Bonhoeffer showed himself to be more tolerant and reasonable toward Jews in general. He made great efforts on their behalf during the war, including helping fourteen German Jews to sneak out of the country and into Switzerland. However, despite his apparent change of heart, he never recanted his earlier statements regarding Jews being punished for the death of Christ, nor his belief that Jews would be better off if they converted to Christianity. He was, however, making an effort to save Jewish lives during the war, a project that led to his own eventual arrest and execution at the hands of the Gestapo. Kenneth C. Barnes, in a review for Shofar, commented that "Haynes does much more than review the praise and criticisms in existing scholarship. Haynes believes Bonhoeffer throughout his life expressed ambivalence about Jews, and this consistent ambivalence is central to his understanding of the relationship of Jews to Christianity."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

America, March 12, 1994, Daniel J. Harrington, review of To Each Its Own Meaning: An Introduction to Biblical Criticisms and Their Application, p. 16.

American Historical Review, October 1, 2003, John B. Boles, review of Noah's Curse: The Biblical Justification of American Slavery, p. 1150.

Catholic Biblical Quarterly, July 1, 1994, John Kaltner, review of To Each Its Own Meaning, p. 621.

Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, November 1, 1993, E.S. Steele, review of To Each Its Own Meaning, p. 476; January 1, 2003, E.R. Crowther, review of Noah's Curse, p. 841.

Christian Century, December 18, 2002, Laurie Maffly-Kipp, review of Noah's Curse, p. 38; September 21, 2004, Jason Byassee, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon: Portraits of a Protestant Saint, p. 42; May 30, 2006, Amy Plantinga Pauw, review of The Bonhoeffer Legacy: Post-Holocaust Perspectives, p. 25.

Church History, March 1, 2006, Susannah Heschel, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon, p. 205.

Civil War History, December 1, 2003, John David Smith, review of Noah's Curse, p. 395.

Cross Currents, September 22, 1996, Amiel Wohl, review of Reluctant Witnesses: Jews and the Christian Imagination, p. 430.

Dialog: A Journal of Theology, summer, 2005, John W. Matthews, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon, pp. 199-200.

History: Review of New Books, January 1, 2003, Thomas M. Bolin, review of Noah's Curse, p. 61.

Interpretation, January 1, 1997, Clark M. Williamson, review of Reluctant Witnesses, p. 104; January 1, 2006, Kathy L. Dawson, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon, p. 118.

Journal of American History, December 1, 2003, Randy J. Sparks, review of Noah's Curse, p. 1019.

Journal of Church and State, September 22, 2002, Christopher H. Owen, review of Noah's Curse, p. 836.

Journal of Ecclesiastical History, July 1, 2005, Andrew Chandler, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon, p. 627.

Journal of Ecumenical Studies, September 22, 1997, Ellen M. Umansky, review of Reluctant Witnesses, p. 605.

Journal of Religion, July 1, 2003, Gregg Taylor, review of Noah's Curse, p. 452.

Journal of Southern History, November 1, 2003, John P. Daly, review of Noah's Curse, p. 912.

Library Journal, April 1, 2004, John Jaeger, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon, p. 99.

Presbyterian Record, November 1, 2005, "The Resistance of the Believing Soul: Bonhoeffer Represented ‘Moral and Political Revolt against Injustice and Cruelty,’" p. 31.

Publishers Weekly, January 30, 2006, review of The Bonhoeffer Legacy, p. 64.

Reference & Research Book News, November 1, 1997, "Holocaust Education and the Church-Related College," p. 19; November 1, 1999, review of The Death of God Movement and the Holocaust: Radical Theology Encounters the Shoah, p. 17.

Reviewer's Bookwatch, August 1, 2004, John Taylor, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon.

Review of Biblical Literature, Volume 6, 2004, Dexter E. Callender, review of Noah's Curse, pp. 571-574.

Scottish Journal of Theology, January 1, 1994, Jenny Sankey, review of Prospects for Post-Holocaust Theology, p. 106.

Shofar, September 22, 2000, Clark Williamson, review of The Death of God Movement and the Holocaust, p. 155; January 1, 2001, Clark Williamson, review of The Death of God Movement and the Holocaust, p. 155; March 22, 2007, Kenneth C. Barnes, review of The Bonhoeffer Legacy, p. 182.

Theological Studies, December 1, 2003, Joseph E. Capizzi, "Slavery in Early Christianity," p. 877.

Theology, January 1, 2006, Ian Stockton, review of The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon.

Theology Today, July 1, 1997, review of Reluctant Witnesses, p. 286.

Times Literary Supplement, October 4, 2002, "Freedom at Any Price," p. 3.

ONLINE

Elmhurst College Web site,http://www.elmhurst.edu/ (May 22, 2008), author profile.

Explore Faith Web site,http://www.explorefaith.org/ (May 22, 2008), author profile.

Oxford University Press Web site,http://www.oup.com/ (May 22, 2008), author profile.

Rhodes College Web site,http://www.rhodes.edu/ (May 22, 2008), faculty profile.

Haynes, Stephen R. 1958-

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article