Richard Lyman Bushman Professor of Mormon Studies, UVA department of religious studies
Kathleen Flake is the Richard Lyman Bushman Professor of Mormon Studies in UVA's department of religious studies. Professor Flake's research in the area of American religious history focuses on the adaptive strategies of 19th- and 20th-century American religious communities and the effect of pluralism on religious identity; she is also interested in the constructive function of text and ritual in maintaining and adapting the identity and gendered power structures of religious communities. In the area of American Legal History, she studies the influence of American law on American religion and the theological tensions inherent in the First Amendment religious clauses. Her current project is “Mormon Matriarchy, a Study of Gendered Power in Antebellum America.” Prior to her appointment at Virginia, she taught at Vanderbilt University in both the Divinity School and Graduate Department of Religion. Before becoming an academic, she litigated cases on behalf of the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Washington, D.C.