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Faculty & Staff

Rosalind I. J. HackettRosalind I. J. Hackett

Chancellor’s Professor
508 McClung Tower
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-0450

Phone: 865-974-2466

See Also: Curriculum Vitae | Selected Works Profile

Rosalind I. J. Hackett taught in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville from 1986-2021, and was an adjunct Professor in Anthropology. She is a Chancellor’s Professor (2019-) and was a Distinguished Professor in the Humanities from 2017-20 and 2003-08. She taught in Nigerian universities from 1975-1983, while conducting fieldwork. Her graduate degrees are from the University of London (M.Phil. in History and Philosophy of Religion) and from the University of Aberdeen (Ph.D. Religious Studies). As an undergraduate, she was a French major at the University of Leeds, before 'converting' to the academic study of religion.

As a specialist on the religions of Africa, she has published widely on new religious movements in Africa (New Religious Movements in Nigeria, ed. 1987), religious pluralism (Religion in Calabar, 1989), art (Art and Religion in Africa, 1996), gender, the media, and religion in relation to human rights (Religious Persecution as a U.S. Policy Issue, co-ed., 1999). In 2008, she  published an edited book, Proselytization Revisited: Rights Talk, Free Markets, and Culture Wars (London: Equinox, 2008), and has co-edited Displacing the State: Religion and Conflict in Neoliberal Africa (Univ. of Notre Dame Press, 2011). She published two co-edited works in 2015: (with Simon Coleman) The Anthropology of Global Pentecostalism and Evangelicalism (New York University Press, 2015) and (with Benjamin Soares) New Media and Religious Transformations in Africa (2015).  Her current research is on sound as religion (particularly in relation to gender, as well as indigenous religions), and on the regulation of religious diversity in Africa. She was a member of the Global Indigenous Religions (INREL) project (2014-19), which took her to arctic Norway, Nagaland in N.E. India, the Costa Rican rainforest, and Big Island, Hawai’i.

Rosalind was Head of the Department of Religious Studies from 2009-18.  She taught courses on the African Religions, Anthropology of Religion, Comparison of World Religions, and Religion and Nonprofit Leadership.  She enjoyed directing her extra-curricular energies to promoting international and intercultural perspectives on campus and in the wider community. She co-directed the UT program in Uganda, the Gulu Study and Service Abroad Program (GSSAP), from 2011-14.  In 2014-15, she was a Visiting Professor at Harvard Divinity School and Research Associate in the Women's Studies in Religion Program.  For the fall semester 2018, Rosalind was the Gerardus van der Leeuw Fellow at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, University of Groningen, in the Netherlands. 

From 2005-2015, she served as President of the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR), and was elected an Honorary Life Member in 2015.  She was a founding member of the African Association for the Study of Religions (AASR) in 1992.  In 2014, she became Vice President of the International Council on Philosophy and Human Sciences (CIPSH), associated with UNESCO.  She is also active on the Board of Directors and as Program Coordinator of the African Consortium on Law and Religion Studies (ACLARS).  She is frequently consulted by government, development, and media organizations on religion in Africa, and the rise of Pentecostalism in Africa and beyond. In August 2019, she received an honorary chieftaincy title, Yeye Meye (mother who knows our ways) from the Elerinmo (king) of Erinmoland, in Nigeria. In 2020, Hackett was named an Extraordinary Professor in the Desmond Tutu Centre for Religion and Social Justice at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa.

See, also, her Faculty Appreciation Week spotlight.

  • Ph.D. in Religious Studies, University of Aberdeen, Scotland, 1986
  • M.Phil. in Religious Studies, University of London, 1978
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Education (credit), St. Luke's College/University of Exeter (Major:, French; minor: Religious Education.), 1974
  • B.A. Honours in French and Religious Studies, University of Leeds, 1973

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