Skip to main content

Secondary navigation:

Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life

Visiting Scholars

boisi center for religion and american public life

Each year the Boisi Center provides an intellectual home for visiting scholars working on significant projects related to religion and public life. Visiting scholars participate in the intellectual life of the Center, which includes numerous public events, and may have an opportunity to present their own research as well. For more information about the visiting scholars program, or to apply, please see the application information.


Visiting Scholars

mark shieh

Jenn-Chyun Mark Shieh (August 2018; January/February 2019)

Jenn-Chyun Mark Shieh is an associate professor at Tajen University in Taiwan. He was a Fulbright Senior Research Grantee as well as a Yale University Visiting Scholar in Yale Center for Faith and Culture from 2016 to 2017. Shieh studies politics and diversity in liberal democracies as well as questions of pluralism, religious education, and spirituality from a transcultural and comparative perspective. Shieh received his Ph.D. from the Division of Religious and Theological Studies at Boston University.


Erick Berrelleza headshot

Erick Berrelleza, S.J. (AY 2019-2020)

The Religious Lives of Latino Immigrants: Geographies and Shifting Landscapes in the New South

Erick Berrelleza is a Ph.D. candidate in Sociology at Boston University. While at the Boisi Center, Erick will be writing on his dissertation research, which is an ethnographic project attempting to explore the lived religious experiences of immigrants from Latin America in the United States. Drawing on in-depth interviews, observation and participation in the field, Berrelleza's project will examine how beliefs are expressed in everyday embodied practices and how those practices shape and are shaped by the experience of migration and the physical places in which they take place. 

Berrelleza's study will go beyond previous research on individual lived religion by considering the rapidly growing group of Latin American immigrants in the United States. The most comprehensive study of individual lived religion narratives conducted to date privileges the stories of people who are “well educated and relatively well off.” Thus, many stories of Latinos are absent from the literature. Because of Berrelleza's interest in individual religious practices in relation to places of arrival, this will be a comparative study with a rural site and an urban site in North Carolina. Engaging a comparative project provides the opportunity to investigate how places of arrival with both shared and unique structural conditions enable and constrain religious practices for a marginalized population.

The Boisi Center is excited to welcome Erick Berrelleza during the next academic year, 2019-2020. Berrelleza presented previous research at a luncheon colloquium in the fall of 2018 on Gentrification in an Urban Church.

For a list of past visiting scholars, click here.