Michael Hundley

Assistant Professor of Teaching, Religious Studies

(901) 678-1683
Clement Hall, Room #129
Office Hours
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About Michael Hundley

I love researching and teaching comparative religion. I believe that understanding religion helps us to better understand other people and ourselves, and the insights gained from Religious Studies can be transformational, both personally and professionally. At Memphis, I will be teaching on all aspects of religion, yet continue to research ancient religions and find that my research and teaching continue to influence each other. My research focuses on the intersection of human and divine in the Hebrew Bible (Christian Old Testament) and the ancient Near East. I am especially interested in understanding ancient conceptions of gods and how these led to the emergence of monotheism (the belief in one god).

My academic journey has been a long and winding one. I’ve moved almost twenty times in my ninety years of marriage (to an extremely tolerant and wonderful wife) and picked up three kids along the way. I began as an economics major at Amherst College before having an existential crisis and pursuing the meaning of life.  Rather than go to Wall Street, I began studying religion with stops in Chicago, Boston, Jerusalem, and Cambridge, where I received my Ph.D.  Afterwards, I did postdoctoral research in Munich for two years. Since I’ve been back stateside, I’ve bounced around quite a bit before coming to Ellensburg, with teaching gigs at Georgetown, St. Joseph’s, Scranton, Syracuse, and Central Washington University.

Along the way, I’ve published three books and many articles (see below). I’m working on a fourth, Ancient Gods and Monsters, and have been in talks about it with Oxford and Cambridge. Future projects include a short book comparing divine presence in the ANE and Hindu traditions and a monograph on gender and divinity. I love discussing religion and life more broadly.  In fact, the best part of my job is probably making personal connections with my students and helping to shape how they approach the world. So, please come by for a chat!