Professor, Religious Studies
Mark Hulsether’s research and teaching centers on the interplay between religion, culture, and politics in recent U.S. history; it situates this interplay within a broad set of historical, cross-cultural, and interdisciplinary perspectives. If we imagine this field of interest as a set of concentric circles, the inner circle is studying religion and society in the U.S. since 1945. Many of his publications and upper level classes fall within this category.
The middle circle of interest is an effort to understand recent developments within North American history, especially since the Civil War but extending to years before European conquest. His bread and butter survey class, “Religion and Society in North America (RS 233)” and some of his publications fall here.
Two more circles represent wider horizons of interest—situating U.S. culture within global contexts and participating in cross-disciplinary conversations about methods for interpreting culture. Some of his major writing projects and course offerings in recent years have fallen here.
Two overall concerns inform his work: exploring how specific cases of religious practice fit within larger fields of power, and building bridges between the academic study of religion and wider scholarly conversations in cultural history, American Studies, and cultural studies.
Ph.D., with vote of distinction on qualifying exams, Program in American Studies, University of Minnesota, 1992
M.Div., Magna Cum Laude, Yale University Divinity School, 1984
B.A., Liberal Arts, St. Olaf College, 1979