Today we celebrate the Centre for the Study of Bible and Violence (CSBV). The Centre is part of Bristol Baptist College and has a firmly theological foundation. Its director is the fabulous Helen Paynter, a long-time Shiloh supporter, one of our 2019 activists, author of the second volume in our Routledge Focus series (see a Q&A with Helen about this book here), as well as of a book on the Bible and domestic violence (reviewed here). Helen also featured in our lockdown series.
The Centre’s vibrant blog is a hub for academic research on the Bible and violence, providing a forum for researchers at every level. In addition, its ‘Applied Arm’ offers resources for preventing or tackling abuses within church settings.
CSBV has its own podcast (‘Guns and God’) and its own open access journal, Journal for the Study of Bible and Violence (JSBV). This journal is, as stated on the CSBV website, ‘committed to global scholarship and to encouraging emerging scholars’.
In 2021, CSBV hosted a large international online conference—‘From the Rising to the Setting Sun: Global Perspectives on Bible and Violence’—and launched its Routledge monograph series ‘Bible and Violence’. The aim of the series is that ‘Each volume will describe and evaluate a well-delineated situation of structural or physical violence, within which the Bible has been or is being weaponised by its actants. It will also, from a perspective that is both academically critical and confessionally committed, offer a constructive interpretation of the relevant texts or themes which is irenic, moderate, and promotes human flourishing.’ The call for proposals is now open.
While the tenor of CSBV is distinct from that of the Shiloh Project, the two have a number of aims in common. Indeed, we recently launched our co-run informal mentoring scheme for postgraduates and early career researchers working on violent and distressing topics in religion/the Bible. (For more information, see here.)
Thank you, CSBV, for your support, important research-based peace-building work, and energetic activism.