Faculty Profile: Dr. Kate Blanchard
Kate Blanchard wields chalk in the classroom as if it were a divine calling.
After earning her doctorate degree in Christian theology and ethics at Duke University, she began teaching courses in religion and women’s studies at Alma College.
“I became interested in religious studies because I naively thought it would help me figure out the meaning of life,” she says. “Twenty years later, I think I am even more confused than I was in college, but I am still fascinated by the ways other people answer that question.”
The assistant professor recently explored how Christianity and economics are related in her book, The Protestant Ethic or the Spirit of Capitalism, which was published in 2010.
“The book grew out of my skepticism that Christianity and capitalism go hand-in-hand,” she says. “It interrogates the assumption that Jesus would have been really pleased with American business or the global marketplace as it exists today.”
Inspired by Vagina Monologues creator Eve Ensler’s visit to Alma College in 2008, Blanchard also designed the course REL 399 Biblical Vagina Monologues. Six monologues written and performed by the students from this course can be found on YouTube.
“There are some truly horrible stories about women and sex in the Bible that I think should be an explicit part of Christian conversations about The Vagina Monologues,” she says.
Blanchard is grateful to both her students and her colleagues for making teaching here such a rewarding experience.
“The best thing about working at Alma are the people—students who are bright and teachable and faculty and staff who are dedicated to helping students become thoughtful and productive adults,” she says.
Her husband, the Rev. Chris Moody, is a full-time dad. They share a home with their son, Gus, a dinosaur and train connoisseur who is in elementary school.