Episode: In this episode, Susan Eastman talks with Erin and Matt about her new book on Pauline Anthropology. The book is a fascinating three-way dialogue between the Apostle Paul, Epictetus, and current trends in cognitive psychology and neuroscience. Eastman’s ability to integrate these three complex disciplines into a single, thought-provoking book is likewise matched by her ability to articulate its profound implications for pastoral ministry.
Guest: (from Duke Divinity’s website) Susan Grove Eastman is an Associate Research Professor of New Testament at Duke Divinity School. Her scholarship focuses on Paul’s letters in relationship to the formation and transformation of Christian identity. Her first book, Recovering Paul’s Mother Tongue: Language and Theology in Galatians (Eerdmans, 2006), explored Paul’s use of familial imagery to proclaim the gospel’s transforming and sustaining power in the life of Christian communities. More recent work has focused on Paul’s understanding of Israel in Galatians and Romans, and on the theme of the incarnation in Philippians. Her current research investigates questions of participation and identity formation through a close reading of key Pauline texts in their first century context and in conversation with contemporary work in the fields of cognitive psychology, philosophy, and neuroscience. With appointments in both the biblical and ministerial divisions at Duke Divinity, Dr. Eastman teaches courses on the New Testament, the Bible in the church, Pauline anthropology, and preaching Paul. Ordained in the Episcopal Church, she has served churches from New York to Alaska, in addition to her scholarly work.
The Book: Susan Grove Eastman, Paul and the Person: Reframing Paul’s Anthropology (Eerdmans, 2017). (from the publisher’s website) In this book Susan Grove Eastman presents a fresh and innovative exploration of Paul’s participatory theology in conversation with both ancient and contemporary conceptions of the self. Juxtaposing Paul, ancient philosophers, and modern theorists of the person, Eastman opens up a conversation that illuminates Paul’s thought in new ways and brings his voice into current debates about personhood.
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