Jeremy Rinker Awarded Fulbright
Jeremy Rinker, visiting assistant professor of peace and conflict studies, will be a Fulbright-Nehru Fellow at the Malaviya Centre for Peace Research at Banaras Hindu University in Varanasi (aka Banaras), India, in the spring semester, where he will undertake a teaching and research project titled “Religious and Narrative Identity in Communal Peacebuilding.”
He is one of about 1,100 U.S. faculty and professionals who will travel abroad through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program in 2012-13.
Long committed to understanding the social dynamics of marginalized identities and their connection to the social construction of peace, Jeremy is interested in gaining experience teaching about peacebuilding and conflict resolution in India, as well as connecting a research agenda that highlights the important role of storytelling in entangling groups’ calls for social justice with their collective religious identity.
In addition to teaching a course on religious identity, conflict and peacebuilding, he will observe the pedagogy of the Malaviya Centre for Peace Research. He is especially interested to learn how the center’s work on multicultural community building translates into the classroom.
The trip to India will help Jeremy strengthen his expertise in South Asian conflict and assist in teaching courses in the Peace and Conflict Studies Department upon his return to Guilford. “A Nehru-Fulbright Award in Banaras would allow me to further synthesize my professional aspirations with critical application” he wrote in his proposal. This integration of theory and practice is critical to the future of the field of peace and conflict studies, he says.
A native of Arlington, Va., Jeremy, who describes himself as a global citizen, has traveled to about 20 different countries as Peace Corps volunteer, development worker and educator. After his first trip to India in 1997, he was “revolted, inspired and intrigued all at the same time.”
He earned his Ph.D. from George Mason University’s Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution in 2009, his M.A. in Asian religion from the University of Hawaii in 2001, and his B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh in political science and philosophy in 1995.
A member of the Guilford faculty since 2011, he was a visiting assistant professor at DePauw University 2009-11. His research on the more than 50-year-old Ambedkar Buddhist social movement in Maharashtra, India, is a provocative approach to understanding the often unexplored connections between social justice, conflict resolution and social movement organizations.
The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. The program operates in over 155 countries worldwide.