Cynthia M. Baker

Professor of Religious Studies


Religious Studies

Hedge Hall, Room 203

Classical and Medieval Studies

Hedge Hall, Room 203


Ph.D., Duke; M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School; B.A., Wesleyan

JewProfessor Baker teaches a wide range of courses including: Religion, Violence, and Nonviolence; Hebrew Bible; New Testament; Eve, Adam, and the Serpent; Jews and Judaism in Antiquity; History of Early Christianity; Human Suffering: Job, Genesis, Revelation; Gender and Judaism; The Nature of Spirituality; Biblical Criticism; Food and the Sacred; and Images of Jesus in Film.

Her research explores ideas about gender, race/ethnicity, and nationalism in the formative periods of Judaism and Christianity and in modern historiography on these periods.  Her recent book, Jew is the focus of a Marginalia: Los Angeles Review of Books Forum and was highlighted in a New York Times Op-Ed in April 2017.  It has been called “A rewarding and important book” and “Highly Recommended” by the American Library Association.

When not in her office she can often be found foraging about the woods for wild gourmet mushrooms.