Creighton Coleman

Postdoctoral Fellow

As a teacher, I encourage students to draw from their own experiences when engaging readings or larger ideas in the classroom. I find that this creates a classroom environment where we can better get to know each other while asking questions or making applications that feel more relevant to us. My academic training is in the area of religion and politics, with specific emphasis on Pentecostalism, Christian theology, and democracy. People usually have experiences and opinions about religion and politics, which makes these conversations more enjoyable. I am interested in historical and social scientific perspectives on religion and politics but also working from theological language that religious people might use to describe themselves. The goal is not to make students believe any one thing; religious and non-religious students enter these conversations all the same. In the classroom, I work to cultivate a collaborative, sometimes lighthearted, honest, and non-defensive context where students can practice empathic listening and attempt to understand what is motivating others who seem quite strange.