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Prof Insights: Faculty-Led Workshop 2021 – Professor Hollmann Online


June 7, 2021
June 9, 2021


Continuing Education



Pop Culture and Theology

From Netflix to Comic Con, pop culture is the accessible way that natural theology is articulated in our globalized world. While millions of North Americans eschew church and organized religion, they daily engage in various forms of pop culture. This workshop will explore ways to interpret pop culture theologically and how to teach theology through pop culture. Charles Taylor’s A Secular Age unfolds how we live in a spiritual age in which past religious impulses linger in yearnings for the possibility of human flourishing. As Taylor observes, “we are just at the beginning of a new age of religious searching” (Taylor, 535). In Understanding Theology and Pop Culture, Gordon Lynch defines pop culture as “the shared environment, practices, and resources of everyday life” (Lynch, 21). Building upon the work of Taylor and Lynch, this workshop shows that pop culture is the relevant and relatable way natural theology as the contemporary spiritual quest for human flourishing is imagined, experienced and expressed. The workshop also will address ways to use pop culture as medium of missional reflection. Topics to be covered include: interpreting film and television theologically; collectibles, natural theology and the iconography of pop culture and the search for lasting community; and fandom, cosplay and natural theology rites of passage and rituals of human flourishing.

Dr. Joshua Hollmann

Associate Professor of Theology, Concordia College New York, Bronxville

Dr. Joshua Hollmann is author of The Religious Concordance: Nicholas of Cusa and Christian-Muslim Dialogue (Brill, 2017), editor of Nicholas of Cusa and the Making of the Early Modern World (Brill, 2019) and currently writing Theology and Wes Anderson, and Natural Theology and Pop Culture for the Theology and Pop Culture Series with Lexington Books and Fortress Academic. He is currently writing a second doctoral thesis on “Ritualizing Trust: Theological Explorations in Practice for Christian-Muslim Relations” in the external Ph.D. program at Radboud University in the Netherlands. Hollmann has lectured and taught at universities and seminaries in India, Sudan, Canada, Turkey, Haiti and the Philippines. He pastored a multicultural Lutheran congregation in Montreal (2005-09), and since 2009 has served as pastor of Christ Lutheran Church in New York City (Woodside, Queens). In addition, Hollmann serves as vice president of the LCMS Atlantic District.

Dr. Joshua Hollmann photo

Tentative schedule

One 10-11:45 a.m. Session One
11:45 a.m.-noon Q&A
2-3:45 p.m. Session Two
3:45-4 p.m. Q&A
Two 10-11:45 a.m. Session One
11:45 a.m.-noon Q&A
2-3:45 p.m. Session Two
3:45-4 p.m. Q&A
Three 10-11:45 a.m. Session Five
11:45 a.m.-noon Q&A
Registration cost: $100
Registration deadline: May 24, 2021
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Note: The schedule is subject to change at the discretion of the workshop presenters.