Religious Identity and Cultural Negotiation
Toward a Theology of Christian Identity in Migration
Imprint: Pickwick Publications
"Religious Identity and Cultural Negotiation presents the reflections on personal identity of evangelical graduate students who came to the United States from religious minority communities in Eastern Europe and South/Southeast Asia. Employing sociological and psychological research in conversation with significant theological and biblical reflection, McGill demonstrates how immigration experiences and the nature of Christian identity in general mutually illumine one another. Born out of many years of working with students from abroad, this wide-ranging work offers insights for immigrant education, even as it explores the rich potential of migration studies for Christian thought."
--M. Daniel Carroll R., Blanchard Professor of Old Testament, Wheaton College and Graduate School
"Religious Identity and Cultural Negotiation is an invitation to a practical theology of Christian identity in the context of global migration and higher education--a compelling synthesis of theological reflection and social science."
--Roman R. Williams, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Calvin College
"This is a carefully researched book which is an important contribution to the field of migration studies. The reader will find their own identity challenged as they consider the construction of Christian identity alongside identities of departure, belonging, and displacement as experienced by the migrants whose stories are told here. I warmly commend this book for its creative use of the lens of migration to crack open questions of identity."
--Cathy Ross, Tutor in Contextual Theology, Ripon College, Cuddesdon; MA Leader, Church Mission Society; Author of Mission on the Road to Emmaus, with Steve Bevans (2015) and Pioneering Spirituality, with J. Baker (2015)
"Combining theologies of identity with sociological research among migrants, Jenny McGill thoughtfully examines how the experiences of departure, belonging, and displacement can illuminate the human relationship with God. She contributes intelligently to migration theologies that warn against territoriality and stasis in theological engagement. Those looking for a careful theological response to an emotive contemporary issue will find McGill an excellent guide.
--Emma Wild-Wood, Lecturer in World Christianities, Faculty of Divinity, University of Cambridge
"Globalization and the fluidity of migration have both enriched our world as well as challenged it. In this reflective interdisciplinary study, Jenny McGill navigates the complexity of migration and cultural identity specifically with regard to the theological training of internationals. Her arguments are nuanced, her research thorough, and her conclusions judicious. This is a much-needed contribution to a growing area of discussion."
--Malcolm Gill, Lecturer in Greek, New Testament, and Preaching, Sydney Missionary and Bible College, Sydney, Australia
"This work explores the important phenomenon of educational migration and religious identity formation of evangelical minorities outside of North America. The author takes an imaginative, multidisciplinary approach to integrating extensive social science research, weaving rich theological conversations, and stimulating deeper understanding of changing religious minority identity in the context of multiple cultural and transnational experiences. A welcome, timely contribution!"
--Jenny Pak, Associate Professor, Fuller Theological Seminary, School of Psychology
"This genre-bending book, drawing from social science and theology, considers the identity construction of Christian immigrants who straddle continents and cultures. Grounded in rigorous research spanning multiple countries, it is a cogently argued and theologically profound meditation on how disoriented religious actors rewrite their identities within faith communities."
--David R. Swartz, Associate Professor of History, Asbury University
"This book is an important contribution that helps reshape the narrative of those on the move and our own personal narratives. As it explores the complex process of identity formation, it challenges us to transform not only how we understand 'the other' but also how we understand ourselves and our journey through this world."
--Daniel G. Groody, University of Notre Dame
"Dr. Jenny McGill notes that one in thirty-five of us will identify as a migrant at some point in our lives, making this work highly relevant for our increasingly migratory and global society. She masterfully integrates philosophical, theological, and psychological insights on identity development in her study of evangelical seminarians who have studied abroad - but she doesn't stop there. Migration becomes, for her, a metaphor of any Christian's growth in Christ. This is an insightful and helpful read for those of us working with international populations in non-profits, churches, and education, or anyone who desires to glean wisdom on Christian identity development through the metaphor of migration."
--Lisa Igram, Associate Dean of Spiritual Development, Biola University