When Religion Matters

Better late than never, but I wanted to share that my book exploring women’s healing practices in the aftermath of the Liberian Civil War was published by Wipf & Stock!  Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 8.56.12 AM

Read more about it here. Here’s an excerpt from the back cover:

How does starting with women’s statements that “God was there” in the moment of wartime violence shift the ways we think about religion, conflict, and healing? Religion and health scholar Annie Hardison-Moody examines this interdisciplinary question through several lenses–postconflict feminist theory, practical theology, and feminist and womanist theory and theology. Drawing on participatory fieldwork with a Liberian community in North Carolina, Hardison-Moody argues that religion matters for many survivors of violence, and that this fact must be taken into account in international conversations about women, violence, and healing. Consequently, she looks beyond the institutional forms of religion, instead studying the ways women live and profess healing and transformation as a part of their everyday lives. This, she argues, is the crucial task for postconflict transformation work. Understanding these “everyday” ways women experience and heal from violence is central to advancing our conceptions of healing and peace as they exist in a world rife with conflict. Scholars, activists, and caregivers will be able to draw on this resource as they attempt to understand and practice healing and transformation with those who have experienced violence and trauma.

Endorsements & Reviews

“Dr. Hardison-Moody’s breathtaking new book is lyrically written, even as it wrestles with the raw suffering of war as it affected Liberian women. This book expands our imagination by bringing to light the distinctiveness of the transformational work accomplished by women victimized by war. By emphasizing the powerful role of religion–as understood by women–new possibilities emerge for peace-building in the aftermath of a war that seemed to make every future impossible. Highly recommended!”
–Wendy Farley, Professor of Religion and Ethics, Emory University

“This exemplary book showcases the impact of religion on healing from the horrors of war. Using feminist practical theological tools, Annie Hardison-Moody takes up women’s cause with amazing verve and intellect, studying religion’s reconciling role, not (just) as an institutional or doctrinal matter but as an everyday force in people’s lives.”
–Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Religion, Psychology, and Culture, The Divinity School and Graduate Department of Religion, Vanderbilt University; author of Christian Theology in Practice: Discovering a Discipline and Also a Mother: Work and Family as Theological Dilemma

Re-Thinking “Food Deserts”

We have learned a lot through the Voices into Action project about how and why families purchase and eat the foods that they do.  I’m excited to share that some of that research has just been published in the Journal of Hunger and Environmental Nutrition.  In this article, we pay attention to the ways that residents of areas labeled as “food deserts” (areas where residents lack access to safe, affordable, and healthy foods) talk about what they eat, where they shop, and why.  This research demonstrates that price and cost matter a great deal to families who are living on a limited budget.  Contrary to several other studies of “food deserts,” which assume that peoIMG_5708ple shop at the stores closest to their home, our study found that people are willing to travel outside of their local community to find the best prices.  Additionally, we found that the Supplemental Food Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps), was very important for families living in poverty. These findings on SNAP are particularly important as Congress and the White House head into budget discussions for the coming years.