The Society

Statement of Purpose

The Society for Hindu-Christian Studies was founded in November, 1994 as a logical extension to the dialogue and scholarship being carried on in the Hindu-Christian Studies Bulletin (now the Journal of Hindu Christian Studies), which first appeared in 1988 under its founding editor, Dr. Harold Coward.

The society is dedicated to the study of Hinduism and Christianity and their interrelationships. It seeks to create a forum for the presentation of historical research and studies of contemporary practice, for the fostering of dialogue and interreligious conversation, carried forward in a spirit of openness, respect and true inquiry.

Committed to scholarly interchange according to accepted traditional and contemporary methods, the society understands its scope broadly, so as to include issues related to religious practice, spirituality, education; it is interested in supporting activities related to the comparative study of Hinduism and Christianity. Our membership includes Christians interested in the study of Hinduism, Hindus interested in the study of Christianity, and scholars--Hindu, Christian, and other--interested in the historical and contemporary interactions of Hinduism and Christianity.

The words "Hindu" and "Christian" in our name indicate the general scope of our society, but their use is not intended to overlook the diversity within the several traditions, nor to reduce them to simplistic essences, nor to posit them as two exactly parallel traditions conformed to a single standard of religion. Essential to the work of the society will be the effort to unpack the terms "Christian" and "Hindu" productively.

We are aware our scholarship does not take place in a vacuum. There is a long history to the interactions between Christians and Hindus, and centuries of good and fruitful encounters must be balanced against a series of unfortunate factors as well, including colonialism, orientalist misreadings, clumsy missionary efforts, tendencies to relativize the faith of others and reduce it to a version of one's own. Influential features of today's situation--such as immigration, growing global economic and cultural interdependence, the simultaneous events of secularization and religious revival, shifting styles in the academic study of religion--mark the context in which the work of the society occurs. We initial years of the society have included forthright and frank conversations in which important issues have been brought forward and discussed.

The Society for Hindu-Christian Studies is a Related Scholarly Organization of the American Academy of Religion.

Officers of the Society

Michelle Voss Roberts, President
School of Divinity
Wake Forest University
Box 7719
Winston-Salem, NC 27109 U.S.A.

Kerry P. C. San Chirico, Vice President
Department of Theology and Religious Studies
Villanova University
Villanova, PA 19085 U.S.A.

Arun W. Jones, Secretary
Chandler School of Theology
Emory University
Atlanta, Georgia 30322 U.S.A.

Bradley J. Malkovsky, Treasurer and Editor, Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies
Department of Theology
University of Notre Dame
232 Malloy Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556, U.S.A.

Chad Bauman, Past President
Department of Philosophy and Religion
Butler University
Indianapolis, IN 46208 U.S.A.

Board of Directors

Francis X. Clooney, S.J.
Harvard Divinity School
Holly Hillgardner
Bethany College
Stephanie Corrigliano
Boston College
Anantanand Rambachan
St. Olaf College
Timothy S. Dobe
Grinnell College
Claire Robison
Lewis & Clark College

Gopal Gupta
Florida Gulf Coast University

Graham M. Schweig
Christopher Newport University

HCac: The Hindu-Christian Studies Academic Discussion List

Bylaws of the Society for Hindu-Christian Studies