Laura Hobgood

Notable Achievements

Professor of Religion Laura Hobgood published a chapter titled “Animals” in The Routledge Companion to Death and Dying, ed. Christopher Moreman. Routledge, 2017.

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Expertise

Animals in the history of the Christian tradition; human-dog history; contemporary religious-ethical issues related to other-than-human animals; religion and ecology; environmental studies; Ecofeminism; human-animal studies; alternative religious experiences (i.e. cycling as religion)

Dr. Hobgood is co-chair of the Environmental Studies program and has chaired the Religion program as well. She holds the Elizabeth Root Paden Chair in Religion and Environmental Studies and is a frequently invited lecturer. In 2018-2019, Dr. Hobgood is coordinating “The Anthropocene,” the 39th Brown Symposium at Southwestern University.

Hobgood has also received many recognitions during her time at SU, including the Mundy Service Award, the William Carrington Finch Award and holding the Paden Brown Chair in Religion and Environmental Studies. 

She is also affiliated with the Animals and Religion Consultation—American Academy of Religion, the Forum on Religion and Ecology, and the American Society of Environmental History. And has served as President of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture.

Hobgood received her Ph.D. from St. Louis University in 1997, her M.Div. from Vanderbilt University in 1989, and here B.A. from James Madison University in 1985. She spends her time away from Southwestern engaged with dog rescue and cycling.

  • Dr. Hobgood is co-chair of the Environmental Studies program and has chaired the Religion program as well. She holds the Elizabeth Root Paden Chair in Religion and Environmental Studies and is a frequently invited lecturer. In 2018-2019, Dr. Hobgood is coordinating “The Anthropocene,” the 39th Brown Symposium at Southwestern University.

    Hobgood has also received many recognitions during her time at SU, including the Mundy Service Award, the William Carrington Finch Award and holding the Paden Brown Chair in Religion and Environmental Studies. 

    She is also affiliated with the Animals and Religion Consultation—American Academy of Religion, the Forum on Religion and Ecology, and the American Society of Environmental History. And has served as President of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture.

    Hobgood received her Ph.D. from St. Louis University in 1997, her M.Div. from Vanderbilt University in 1989, and here B.A. from James Madison University in 1985. She spends her time away from Southwestern engaged with dog rescue and cycling.

  • Dr. Hobgood specializes in the history of animals in the Christian Tradition. She helped found and then co-chaired the Animals and Religion Consultation of the American Academy of Religion (2002-2008). Her overall areas of research include animals in religious traditions and in the history and theology of Christianity; animals in contemporary religious-ethical systems; religion and ecology; environmental studies; ecofeminism, and women in the Christian tradition.

    Her most recent publications are The Bloomsbury Handbook of Religion and Nature (Bloomsbury Academic, 2018) and A Dog’s History of the World: Canines and the Domestication of Humans (Baylor, 2014). She also wroteThe Friends We Keep: Unleashing Christianity’s Compassion for Animals (Baylor University Press, 2010), Holy Dogs and Asses: Animals in the Christian Tradition (University of Illinois Press, 2008). In addition she has published numerous articles and chapters in edited volumes and journals, the most recent of which is “In a Body, on Wheels, in Touch with the Earth: Cycling as Religion and Response” (2018).

    Awards, Grants & Fellowships

    • Individual Research Grant, American Academy of Religion
    • William Carrington Finch Award, Southwestern University, 2008
    • Sam Taylor Fellowship
  • The Bloomsbury Handbook of Religion and Nature (Bloomsbury Academic, 2018)

    A Dog’s History of the World: Canines and the Domestication of Humans (Baylor, 2014)

    The Friends We Keep: Unleashing Christianity’s Compassion for Animals, Baylor University Press, forthcoming 2010.

    Holy Dogs and Asses: Animals in the Christian Tradition, University of Illinois Press, 2008.

    Executive editor, Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature; also entries in this Encyclopedia including “Ecofeminism: Historic and International Developments”

    Editor and Introduction, The Sabbath Journal of Judith Lomax, Oxford University Press, AAR Texts and Translations Series

  • Dr. Hobgood has been an invited lecturer at Yale University, Middlebury College, St. Edward’s University, Drew University, the Vatican Museums, Texas Christian University, the University of Florida, the National Cathedral and Lees-McRae College. 


In the News

  • Dr. Laura Hobgood
    Professor of Religion Dr. Laura Hobgood’s Book “A Dog’s History of the World” Featured in Psychology Today

    Dr. Hobgood was recently interviewed in an article on her 2014 book A Dog’s History of the World: Canines and the Domestication of Humans.