Michelle Voss Roberts

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs,
Associate Professor of Theology

BA, Calvin College; MTS, Emory; PhD, Emory

Voss Roberts teaches in the fields of systematic, comparative, and feminist theologies. She is the author of two book-length works in comparative theology: Dualities: A Theology of Difference (Westminster John Knox, 2010); and Tastes of the Divine: Hindu and Christian Theologies of Emotion (Fordham University Press, 2014), which received the Award for Excellence from the American Academy of Religion. She is also the editor of a volume on the contribution of interreligious comparison to the study of theology, Comparing Faithfully: Insights for Systematic Theological Reflection (Fordham University Press, 2016). Her current book project is a theological anthropology that explores neglected dimensions of human being, including the elements, organs of sense and action, and even limitations, as integral to a contemporary view of humanity. Dr. Voss Roberts is the Vice-President of the Society for Hindu-Christian Studies and past co-chair of the Comparative Theology Group of the American Academy of Religion.

Religious Affiliation

United Church of Christ (ordained)

Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Christian Theology
  • Comparative Theology
  • Theologies and Practices of Religious Pluralism
  • Feminist, Womanist, and Mujerista Theologies
  • Theology and Disability
  • Readings in Queer Theology
  • Readings in Theological Anthropology
  • Christianity in India
  • Interfaith in Winston-Salem


  • Body Parts: A Theological Anthropology. Forthcoming with Fortress Press.
  • Comparing Faithfully: Insights for Systematic Theological Reflection (editor). New York: Fordham University Press, 2016.
  • Tastes of the Divine: Hindu and Christian Theologies of Emotion. New York: Fordham University Press, 2014.
  • Dualities: A Theology of Difference. Louisville, Westminster John Knox Press, 2010.

Select Interviews

Select Journal Articles, Book Chapters, Book Reviews

  • “Discerning Doctrine: Interreligious Dialogue as Experiential Source of Theology.” In The Past, Present and Future of Theology of Interreligious Dialogue, ed. Terrence Merrigan and John Friday. New York: Fordham University Press, forthcoming 2017.
  • “Revealed Religion: Theology and the Nature of God(s).” Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks, Religion: Primer, ed. Jeffrey Kripal. Farmington Hills, MI: MacMillan Reference, 2016.
  • “Aesthetics in Hindu-Christian Studies: A Theological Framework,” Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies 28 (2015): 3-10.
  • “Canon, Comparison, and Other Lovers.” In Erotic Faith: Desire, Suffering, and Transformation in the Incarnational Theology of Wendy Farley, ed. Mari Kim, 175-188. Sopher Press, 2014.
  • “The Rasa of Christian Theology.” Bangalore Theological Forum 45.1 (2013): 151-162.
  • “Beyond Beauty: Aesthetics and Emotion in Interreligious Dialogue.” In Women and Interreligious Dialogue, ed. Catherine Cornille and Jillian Maxey,188-208. Eugene: Wipf & Stock, 2013.
  • “Tasting the Divine: The Aesthetics of Religious Emotion in Indian Christianity.” Religion 42.4 (2012): 575-595.
  • ‘“Who Is My Good Neighbor?’ Classical Indian Dance in the Prophetic Work of the Church.” Exchange 41.2 (2012): 103-119.
  • “Fear and Women’s Writing: Choosing the Better Part.” In Women, Writing, Theology: Transforming a Tradition of Exclusion, ed. Emily A. Holmes and Wendy Farley, 11-32. Baylor University Press, 2011.
  • “‘The Body Gains Its Share’: The Asceticism of Mechthild of Magdeburg.” In Perceiving the Divine through the Human Body: Mystical Sensuality, ed. June McDaniel and Thomas Cattoi,159-174. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2011.
  • “Power, Gender, and the Construction of a Kashmir Śaiva Mystic.” Journal of Hindu Studies 3.3 (2010): 279-297.
  • “Religious Belonging and the Multiple.” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion 26.1 (2010): 43-62.
  • “Gendering Comparative Theology.”  In The New Comparative Theology: Voices from the Younger Generation, ed. Francis X. Clooney, 109-128. New York: Continuum, 2010.
  • “Retrieving Humility: Rhetoric, Authority, and Divinization in Mechthild of Magdeburg.” Feminist Theology 18.1 (September 2009): 50-73.
  • “Neither Bhukti nor Mukti: The New Sensorium in Devotional Practice.” Practical Matters (Spring 2009): online.
  • “Flowing and Crossing: The Somatic Theologies of Mechthild and Lalleśwarī.” Journal of the American Academy of Religion 76.3 (2008): 638-663.

Select Academic Lectures

  • “Blurry Vision as Transcendence: Lessons from Kashmir Saivism.” University of Münster, Germany. July 1, 2016.
  • “Body as Image of God: Comparative Reflections on Kashmir Saiva Anthropology.” Symposium on Divinity and the Body. Ljubljana, Slovenia. June 27, 2016.
  • “That Subtle Talent Which Holds Them Spellbound: Aesthetics and Emotion in Hindu-Christian Encounter.” Annual Lecture of the De Nobili Research Library. Vienna, Austria. June 24, 2016.
  • “Feeling My Neighbor’s Faith: Aesthetics and Hindu-Christian Encounter.” Annual Religion Department Lecture, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, MI. March 9, 2015.
  • “Embodiment in Comparison: Thinking-Feeling with Abhinavagupta.” Methods and Criteria for Comparative Theology Conference, University of Paderborn, Germany. August 8, 2014.
  • “Bridging Impasses: From the Margins of Traditions and the Margins of a Discipline.” Center for the Study of World Religions, Harvard University, April 12, 2013.
  • “Body Parts: How Comparative Theology Assists a Feminist View of the Human Person.” Gensler Symposium, Middlebury College, April 11, 2013.

Select Sermons, Educational Series, and Church Presentations

  • “Images of God and Spiritual Formation.”  Congregational United Church of Christ. Greensboro, NC. March-June, 2015.
  • “Interfaith Appreciation: Learning from Buddhists, Muslims, and Hindus.” Lecture series for Interfaith Winston-Salem at Centenary United Methodist Church. February 2013.

Select Honors and Awards

  • American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion: Constructive-Reflective Studies. 2015.
  • National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipend. 2015.
  • Best Book in Hindu-Christian Studies—Theology/Philosophy (2008-2011). 2012.
  • Lindsay Young Visiting Faculty Fellowship, Marco Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. 2011.
  • Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza New Scholar Award. Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion. 2010.

Professional Affiliations

  • Society for Hindu-Christian Studies
  • American Academy of Religion
  • Feminist Studies in Religion (EFSR Board)
  • Interreligious Studies and Intercultural Theology Journal (Board)
  • Brill Currents of Encounter Book Series (Board)

Professional Website