Dr. Richard J. Callahan, Jr., is interested in the intersections of religion, cultures of work, natural resource extraction, and comparative studies of religions and globalization. He received his PhD in Religious Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his MA in Folklore and Folklife Studies at Western Kentucky University. Dr. Callahan is the author of Work and Faith in the Kentucky Coal Fields: Subject to Dust, and editor of New Territories, New Perspectives: The Religious Impact of the Louisiana Purchase and The Bloomsbury Reader in the Study of Religion and Popular Culture. His latest research explores a religious history of the nineteenth-century American whaling industry and its global networks of exchange in the spaces of the ocean. He is currently a fellow in Yale University’s Material and Visual Cultures of Religion program.
Work and Faith in the Kentucky Coal Fields: Subject to Dust (Indiana University Press, 2009).
New Territories, New Perspectives: The Religious Impact of the Louisiana Purchase (University of Missouri Press, 2008).
Bloomsbury Reader in the Study of Religion and Popular Culture, co-edited with Lisle Dalton and Eric Mazur (2022).
Selected Articles and Book Chapters
"The Old Gods: Whales, Oil, and Teak," with Judith Ellen Brunton and Alex Kaloyanides, Conversations, MAVCOR Journal 6, no. 3 (2022).
"Sperm Whale Teeth in Circulation: A Case Study in Material Economics," Constellation, MAVCOR Journal 6, no. 3 (2022).
"Wobbly Religion: Tactical Formations of Religious Idioms and Space in the Industrial City," Journal of the American Academy of Religion (Fall 2022), 335-355.
“Religious Spaces of American Whaling,” in John Corrigan, ed., Religion, Space, and the Atlantic World (University of South Carolina Press, 2017), 133-152.
“Whales, Cannibals, and Second Nature,” J19: The Journal of Nineteenth-Century Americanists 3 (2015): 190-197.
“Sacred Time,” “Vacations,” and “Fourth of July,” in Religion and American Cultures: An Encyclopedia of Traditions, Diversity, and Popular Expressions, 2nd ed., Gary Laderman and Luís Léon, eds. (ABC-CLIO, 2014).
“The Study of American Religion, Looming Through the Glim,” Religion 42 (June 2012): 425-437.
“The Work of Class in Southern Religion,” The Journal of Southern Religion 13 (2011).
“Class and Labor,” in Blackwell Companion to Religion in America, Philip Goff, ed. (Wiley-Blackwell, 2010), 71-89.
“Allegories of Progress: Industrial Religion in the United States,” with Kathryn Lofton and Chad Seales, Journal of the American Academy of Religion 88 (2010): 1-39.
“Sensing Class: Religion, Aesthetics, and Formations of Class in Eastern Kentucky’s Coal Fields,” in Religion and Class in America: Culture, History, and Politics, Sean McCloud and William Mirola, eds. (Brill, 2008), 175-196.
"Extracting Corporate Religion", with Judith Ellen Brunton, The Immanent Frame, April 2021.
“Haunting the Religious Studies Classroom,” American Academy of Religion’s Spotlight on Teaching, October 2017.
“The Invention of Corporate America’s Invention of Christian America,” Marginalia, Los Angeles Review of Books, December 2015.
“Oceanic Religion,” Religion in American History Blog, April 2013.
“Highway,” Frequencies: A Collaborative Genealogy of Spirituality, December 7, 2011.