Curriculum Vitae: Clinton Bennett

email cb@clintonbennett.net

home page www.clintonbennett.net

 

 

Education

BA (1978) University of Manchester (Theology)

MA (1985) University of Birmingham (Islamic Studies)

PhD (1990) University of Birmingham (Islamic Studies)

Certificate of Professional Studies in Education (1994) Oxford University Delegacy of Local Examinations

M.Ed (1996) University of Oxford (Adult/Distance Teaching and Learning)

 

Fellow: Royal Asiatic Society (FRAS); Royal Anthropological Institute (FRAI); American  Biographical Institute (FABI), Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Religion.

 

Member, American Academy of Religion.   Ordained Minister, Baptist Union of Great Britain (1978).

 

Language Training: 1979 – 1981 full time Bengali language study, Bangladesh (passed Senior Examination, Bangladesh Language Examination Board). 1985 GCSE Bengali grade A.

 

Present Employment: Total Healthcare (Bellmore, NY) – Associate (Companion to developmentally disabled patients/1-to-1 care) (p/t)

 

Employment History

2005- 2007: History and Biography Editor, IIFWP Encyclopedia Project, NY,

 

2005-2007: Associate Professor (Ministry and Living Traditions) and Director of Field Education, UTS Interfaith Seminary, Barrytown, NY

 

2001-5: Principal Officer and Clerk to Governors, Birchfield Community School, UK

 

2003-2005: Affiliated Lecturer, Center for the Study of Jewish-Christian Relations, Cambridge (p/t)

 

2002-2005: Visiting Fellow, Graduate Institute for Theology and Religion, Birmingham University.

 

1998 – 2001: Associate Professor of Religion (Islam/South Asia), Baylor University, Texas USA

 

1992 – 1998: Senior Lecturer in Religious Studies (Islam/Anthropology) and Religious Studies Subject Leader/Assistant Chaplain/Resident Tutor, Westminster College, Oxford, UK.

 

1992-1998: Lecturer (Islam), King Alfred’s College, Winchester (p/t)

 

1987 – 1992: Executive Secretary for Interfaith Relations, The Council of Churches for Britain and Ireland, London.UK.

 

1986 – 1987: Free Church Chaplain, Aston University, Birmingham. UK.

 

1983 – 1986: Community Tutor and Development Worker, Birmingham Ethnic Education and Advisory Service, Birmingham, UK/Associate Minister, Highgate Baptist Church, Birmingham.

 

1978 – 1983: Minister and Distance Education Tutor, Baptist Missionary Society, Bangladesh.

 

Professional Experience

Undergraduate Teaching: I have taught courses on B.Ed, BA and B.Th. degrees in Hinduism, Sikhism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, Methodology, Ethics, Area Studies (Asia and the Americas) and World Cultures. I have also taught as a member of interdisciplinary teams, including the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core. At Westminster, I was Subject Leader for Religious Studies, responsible for delivering Part One of the B.Ed to religious studies’ students. This involved student recruitment, managing the course, monitoring, evaluation and assessment. I was a member of the B.Ed. Examination Board and also External Examiner for New College, Southampton. At Baylor I was a member of the Undergraduate Studies’ Committee within the Religion Department. I was cross-listed as a member of the Asian Studies Faculty.

Postgraduate: I have taught upper level (M.Th, MA, M.Div, M.R.E. and PhD) courses in Religious Pluralism, Spirituality, Ministry, Islam, Religions of India, China and Japan. I have successfully supervised MTh, MA and MEd dissertations in a range of subject areas. At Westminster, I was a member of the MTh Examination Board. At Baylor I was a full member of Graduate Faculty and participated in the oral examination of PhD and MA students. I have acted as external examiner for a Leeds University M.Phil. I have supervised and examined MAs for the Centre for the Study of Jewish-Christian Relations Cambridge. 2005-2007 taught M.Div and M.R.E (Master of Religious Education) students at UTS Interfaith Seminary, Barrytown, NY.  My teaching included Pastoral Theology, Pastoral Care and Counseling, Paths of Faith (World Religions), Islam, Christian-Muslim Relations, The Theory and Practice of Ecumenism, the United Nations and Global Peace and Church Growth. 

 

ICT. Competencies/Skills: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, SIMS: Finance, Personnel, Assessment Manager, STAR (Student Academic Records), Data Manager, Test Manager), MicroGrade and other programs.

 

Web Design: I designed www.clintonbennett.net, which offers resources in religious and cultural studies, Islam, and Christianity including lecture notes, book reviews, a bookshop and a guide to Internet resources.

Editorial: I edited the Journal Discernment from 1990 – 1998 and have guest edited World Faiths Insight and Westminster Studies in Education. I have advised the Continuum International Publishing Group, Ashgate, Routledge and Oxford University Press on titles in Religious Studies.

Consultancy: 1986-92 I was a member of the Religious Studies committee of the UK Government’s Curriculum and Assessment authority. I was a member of the World Council of Churches’ Consultation on the Church and the Jewish People (1992 – 98), attending meetings in Switzerland and Hungary. I was a Consultant at the Barr Meeting of the WCC’s Dialogue Sub Unit (1988) and a member of the Sub Unit’s Working Party that produced Issues in Christian Muslim Relations (1991).  Between 1987 and 1992 I was an advisor to the Roman Catholic Council for the Lay Apostolate, also advising at meetings of the European Roman Catholic Forum in Vienna (1990) and Antwerp (1992). 2005-2007 I was a member of the Global Council of the Universal Peace Federation.  During 2006 I led seminars and workshops on Bangladeshi culture for Hudson School District, NY.  During 2007 I was an accredited representative of IIFWP at the United Nations in NY.

 

Counseling/Pastoral: I was associate minister of Highgate Baptist Church, Birmingham 1985 – 1992,Chaplain at Aston University 1985 – 86 and Assistant Chaplain/Resident Tutor at Westminster College, Oxford 1992 – 98. In these capacities, I have had experience of preaching, pastoral visiting and counseling, leading worship, chairing Deacon’s and congregational meetings, conducting weddings and funerals. At Baylor I was Faculty sponsor for the Indian Sub-Continental Students Association.  In 1978 I completed a hospital chaplains’ course in the UK which included training in person-centered counseling. I have some experience of 1-to-1 patient care working as a companion/sitter for a health care agency at several Mid-Hudson Valley hospitals in New York State.

 

Administrative: At the Council of Churches I was responsible for servicing a network of committees, including minutes, agendas, budget, publications and organizing conferences and residential meetings. On a voluntary basis, I have interviewed and appointed staff as Chair of a School’s Governing Body and as officer of various non-profit agencies. I have had experience of financial (Budget of £2 million) and administrative procedures in a busy community school, including various software packages (Schools Information Management Systems - pupil data, orders/invoices/payments), CEMIS and official returns. As clerk to Governors I was also involved in personnel and employee relations work.

 

Open/Distance Teaching: I have written and delivered open and distance learning courses at pre-graduate (access), undergraduate and graduate levels and helped to develop the Open B.Th. course at Westminster College, Oxford. 2003-5 tutored on-line MA module for Centre for the Study of Jewish-Christian Relations, Cambridge.

 

Voluntary Service: I have served as member, Vice Chair and Chair of Chandos Primary School Governing Body 1986 – 1992 and as a Governor of Yew Tree Primary School (1984 – 88). I was a member of Birmingham Community Relations Council (1985 - 92) and Chair of the Birmingham Affairs Committee of the Birmingham Council of Christian Churches (1987 – 92). I was Secretary of Small Heath Advice Centre (1985 – 89), Chair of Oldknow Bengali Association (1984 – 1992), member of the Highgate Advice Centre Management Committee (1985 – 1992) and a Trustee of the Yew Tree Association. In these capacities, I gained experience of advocacy, fund raising, staff recruitment, and liaison with Charity Commissioners, City Council and Government Departments. I have organized play schemes, supplementary schools and excursions.  I assisted several Birmingham Mosques with obtaining charitable status and funds for community activities.

 

Research: My MA and PhD research analyzed Western approaches to Islam against the background of colonialism and Christian mission, especially in India. I was especially interested in how ideological presuppositions influenced scholars’ assessments of Islam. My M.Ed research used social science methods to evaluate a distance-learning program against its own aims and objectives. My published work reflects interest in a number of theoretical issues in Religious Studies as well as in teaching and learning. These include the insider-outsider problematic, the relationship between theology, Religious Studies and the study of culture, the issue of objectivity, how colonial and neo-colonial attitudes influence the study of religions, post-modern approaches to textual interpretation. I am also interested in the history of Christian-Muslim encounter and have contributed several articles to the award winning Mission Legacies series (published in the International Bulletin of Missionary Research). I maintain a regional interest in cultural and political issues in the Indian Sub-Continent, which I have visited regularly over a 20-year period. My research combines ethnographic methods with textual analyses. I was a Visiting Fellow, Birmingham University Graduate Institute for Religion and Theology between 2002 and 2005.

 

Publications (complete list available on  request)

Books

 

Victorian Images of Islam (1992) London, Grey Seal.

In Search of the Sacred: Anthropology and the Study of Religions (1996) London, Cassell.

Researching into Teaching Methods in Colleges and Universities (co-author) (1996) London, Kogan Page.

In Search of Muhammad (1998) London, Cassell.

In Search of Jesus: Insider and Outsider Images (2001) London, Continuum.

Muslims and Modernity: An Introduction to the Issues and Debates (2005) London, Continuum.

Understanding Christian-Muslim Relations (Continuum)

Commissioned:

 

 

Studying Islam: Critical Issues (Continuum also contracted as editor of the series, Studying Religion)

 

In Search of Solutions: The Problem of Religion and Conflict (Equinox). (at press)

 

Understanding the Qur’an (Continuum)

 

Articles: I have had articles published in The Baptist Quarterly, Dialogue & Alliance, World & I, Discernment, Faith and Freedom, International Bulletin of Missionary Research, Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations, World Faiths Encounter.


 

Sermons: several published in The Expository Times.

Book Reviews: I have had book reviews published in Common Ground, Discernment, Epworth Review, Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations, Journal of Church and State, Journal of Semitic Studies, Missiology, Perspectives in Religious Studies, World Faiths Insight.

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