Dora Pierce Professor of Bible and Professor of Old Testament Leiden University, The Netherlands, MDiv and MPhil; Union Theological Seminary, NY, MPhil and PhD
Johanna W. H. van Wijk-Bos, professor of Old Testament, is the first professor installed to the newly established chair in Bible, named in honor of the Seminary’s first woman graduate, the Rev. Dora Emma Pierce (BD 1961).
The senior member of the faculty, Bos teaches Hebrew Bible, Hebrew language, and electives in liberation theology. She has become widely known as a feminist biblical scholar and theologian with an emphasis on the participation of women in the Bible and the life of faith. She has taught in multi-racial and multi-cultural settings in Montpellier, France, with students from across the French-speaking world, and in Salvador, Brazil, with black and native Brazilian women. She conducts workshops and seminars in the wider church on a frequent basis. An ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), she engages herself with issues of justice for women and disadvantaged groups locally and in the global arena.
Bos writes regularly for both scholarly and popular publications. Some of her books include Making Wise the Simple –The Torah in Christian Faith and Practice
(Eerdmans, 2005), Reformed and Feminist—A Challenge to the Church
(Westminster John Knox, 1991), Reimagining God—The Case for Scriptural Diversity
(Westminster John Knox, 1995), and Called Out With: Stories of Solidarity in Support of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Persons
(Westminster John Knox, 1997).
Bos was born in the Netherlands where she earned two degrees in theology at the University of Leiden. A pioneering woman in theological teaching, she is the only woman in 1976 to receive a doctorate from Union Theological Seminary in New York and the first woman to receive academic tenure at Louisville Seminary.
"As I teach, I try to be aware constantly of how much it is a process of listening. I need to be reminded often of the words of Jewish Scholar Franz Rosenzweig: ‘...those who know how to listen to real wishes may also know how to point out the desired way.’"
-Johanna W. H. van Wijk-Bos