You are here

Visiting Professor of Affective Theological Studies


Ph.D., Claremont Graduate University


Rev. Dr. Thandeka was given the !Xhosa name Thandeka, which means “beloved,” by Archbishop Desmond Tutu in 1984. She holds a Ph.D. in philosophy of religion and theology from Claremont Graduate University, and is an ordained Unitarian Universalist minister and congregational consultant, an Emmy award-winning television producer, and founder of affect theology, which studies religious experience from the standpoint of emotions. Jaak Panksepp, the founder of affective neuroscience, commends Thandeka’s “decisive historical-philosophical analysis” as work that can provide “a universal substrate for nondenominational religious experience” (The Archeology of the Mind, 391).

Thandeka is author of seminal books and papers on Schleiermacher and Cultural Identity Studies, including The Embodied Self: Friedrich Schleiermacher’s Solution to Kant’s Problem of the Empirical Self (1995), Learning to be White: Money, Race and God in America (1999, German edition 2009), the Oxford Handbooks on Feminist Theology and Globalization (2011), and The Cambridge Companion to Friedrich Schleiermacher (2005). Her books and essays have helped secure her place as a “major figure in American liberal theology.”

Thandeka has taught at San Francisco State University, Meadville Lombard Theological School, Williams College, Harvard Divinity School, Lancaster Seminary, and Brandeis University, and has been a Fellow at the Stanford Humanities Center at Stanford University, a Visiting Scholar at the Center for Process Studies at Claremont School of Theology in California, and Union Theological Seminary in New York City. She has many ties to Andover Newton, most recently through a guest lecture to the UUCANS student fellowship and through a course with Dean Drummond where her career is the subject of a student group project.

See the Andover Newton course schedule for current course offerings.

Visiting for the first time? Please introduce your self here | Enrolled Student or alum? Please check the Community Login above and enter your given credentials.