Topics for Consideration when Serving Diverse Student Bodies

Ethnic minority students who are attending majority-culture institutions sometimes find that issues that are of significant concern to their communities are not addressed in their Bible and theology classes. The following lists are intended to offer suggestions for topics that professors may want to consider covering when serving students who come from different racial and ethnic backgrounds—especially students who plan to minister in ethnic minority communities. Of course, each student is unique, and these topics will not be equally relevant to everyone from a particular racial/ethnic background. But they can help us move beyond focusing solely on topics that receive frequent attention in whatever cultural context we find ourselves and reflect on how we can dialogue with our students to help us all think biblically and theologically about a broader range of issues. If you have ideas of other topics that would be helpful to list, contact us here.

All Ethnic Minority Students:

  • Diversity in the Bible and in the theological tradition
  • Biblical justice
  • Living as a minority (Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Daniel, the early church)
  • Oppression
  • Poverty and wealth
  • Power dynamics
  • Racism
  • White history of interpretation/theology

Arab Students:

  • Arab history of interpretation/theology
  • Land

Asian Students:

  • Asian history of interpretation/theology
  • Immigration
  • Honor/shame
  • Communal identity

Black Students:

  • Africa in the Bible
  • Black history of interpretation/theology
  • The curse of Ham (Gen 9)
  • Exodus as a model for deliverance today
  • Criminal justice and policing
  • Slavery

Latino/a Students:

  • Border crossing and immigration
  • Criminal justice and policing
  • Exodus as a model for deliverance today
  • Latino/a history of interpretation/theology

Native American/First Nations Students:

  • Colonialism
  • Land
  • Reception history of how OT texts (Joshua, in particular) have been used against Indigeneous peoples
  • Spirit beings