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MemberMariela Mendez

I am an Associate Professor of Latin American, Latino, and Iberian Studies and Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies at the University of Richmond. My research engages comparative literary studies and feminist and queer theories to interrogate representations of genders and sexualities in print culture throughout Latin America. In particular, I address the various ways in which women writers have used the press to craft alternative spaces of cultural, aesthetic, and political intervention that disrupt heteronormative ideologies. I teach at the intersection of Latin American Studies, Transnational Feminisms, Queer Theory, and Feminist New Materialisms, and I am also interested in the political potential of a transnational feminist critical practice.

MemberJodi Eichler-Levine

Jodi Eichler-Levine is an associate professor of Religion Studies and serves as the Berman Professor of Jewish Civilization at Lehigh University and Director of American Studies. Her work is located at the intersection of Jewish studies, religion in North America, literature, material culture, and gender studies. She holds a Ph.D. in Religion from Columbia University and a B.A. in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies from Brandeis University. Before coming to Lehigh, she spent eight years as a professor of Religious Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. Professor Eichler-Levine is the author of Suffer the Little Children: Uses of the Past in Jewish and African American Children’s Literature (NYU Press, 2013), which was reissued in paperback in 2015. In this work, she analyzes what is at stake in portraying religious history for young people, particularly when the histories in question are traumatic ones. Her publications have also appeared in American Quarterly, Shofar, and other journals.  Additionally, she has written for Religion DispatchesTikkunReligion in American History (where her work was also featured), and the Christian Century Then and Now blog. As an affiliate of the Berman Center for Jewish Studies and a member of the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies core faculty, Dr. Eichler-Levine’s teaching encompasses a wide range of topics, including Jewish comics and graphic novels, religion and food; religious children’s literature; modern Jews; Jews, gender and sexuality; and religion, sci-fi, and fantasy. On the national level, has previously served as co-chair of  co-chair of the Association for Jewish Studies Women’s Caucus  and of the  American Academy of Religion’s Religion, Memory, History Group. Future projects include a book length work on Jewish women, material culture, politics, and performance, currently titled Crafting Judaism: American Jewish Women and Creativity. Professor Eichler-Levine also continues to write on Jewish children’s literature and on race, ethnicity, and religion in the United States. When she is not wearing her professional hats, Professor Eichler-Levine enjoys knitting, sci-fi and fantasy series (all-time favorite: Buffy the Vampire Slayer), the Boston Red Sox, and the Green Bay Packers. She lives in the Lehigh Valley with her husband and daughter.