Dr Gladson Jathanna

Dr Gladson

Dr Gladson Jathanna serves as a Senior Lecturer in the department of History of Christianity (Church History).

At PTC since September 2019

Born in India, Gladson grew up in a small village in Karnataka on the southern part of the country. Prior to his formal theological education, he studied literature with an intense passion that inspired him to engage in creative writings. He later studied theology at the Karnataka Theological College, Mangalore and obtained his Bachelor of Divinity (2001-2005) with several academic prizes for his outstanding academic performance. As being an active member of the Student Christian Movement (SCM) from his student days, Jathanna opted to serve SCM of India as Programme Secretary (2005-2006) before undertaking his advanced theological studies in the area of history of Christianity at the Gurukul Lutheran Theological College and Research Institute in Chennai (2006-2008). On completion of his Master of Theology studies, bagging the general academic proficiency award, he served the Madras Theological College and Seminary in Chennai as faculty (2008-2009). For his doctoral studies, he then moved to Germany and worked as a Research Assistant (wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter) at the Institute for Ecumenical Theology and Oriental Church History, George August University, Göttingen, and earned his doctorate in 2013. During his doctoral studies he was also teaching in two masters’ programmes of the University: MA in Intercultural Theology [jointly offered by the Fachhochschule für Interkulturelle Theologie (FIT), Hermannsburg] and MA in Euroculture.

On completion of his doctoral studies Jathanna came back to India and served the Karnataka Theological College (KTC) in Mangalore as faculty in the department of history of Christianity (2013-2018). During this period, he also served as the director of Karnataka Theological Research Institute (KATHRI), which is affiliated to the Kannada University, Hampi, for MPhil and PhD courses. From 2017 to 2018, he served the Gurukul Lutheran Theological College and Research Institute, Chennai as faculty and head of the department of history of Christianity.  

Gladson Jathanna has got the opportunity to attend and present papers at various national and international consultations, seminars and workshops. Much of his works reflect upon the questions of representation of indigenous knowledge, bodies and sexualities in the European missionary writings. Currently he is co-authoring two monographs (projects of the Council for World Mission): ‘Church and Empire’ and ‘Church and Ecumenism.’ Jathanna is also engaged in creative writings both in Kannada and English. His poetries and other creative writings appear frequently on local journals in Karnataka apart from his own blogs.   

Jathanna has also been involved in various activities outside his research and teaching. He is an executive member of the Church History Association of India (CHAI) since 2006. He served as the chairperson of the Student Christian Movement of India-Karnataka region during 2016-17. He also serves in the Board of History of St. Aloysius College, Mangalore. As a member of American Academy of Religions, Postcolonial Theology Network, World Student Christian Federation, Greenpeace India and many other organisations and networks, Jathanna continues to contribute to the academia and society at large.

He presently resides in the PTC campus with his wife Sherly Snehalatha, who is pursuing her PhD in Social Work, specializing in the area – women and migration. Their common interests include cooking, travelling and watching movies, of course having many other distinct individual interests and hobbies.  

Contact and Other Websites

PUBLICATIONS (selected)

Books

Mode of Mutuality in the Margins of Mission. Hermannsburg Women’s Mission in India. Bangalore: Dharmaram Publications, 2015.

(co-edited with Martin Tamcke) Construction of the Other, Identification of the Self. German Mission in India. Münster: LIT, 2012.

(co-edited with Martin Tamcke) Body, Emotion and Mind: ‘Embodying’ the Experiences in Indo-European Encounters. Münster: LIT, 2013.

Book Chapters

  • ‘Oriental Experiences and Representation: Indian Native Women in the Basel Missionaries’ Discourse,’ in Martin Tamcke and Arthur Manukyan (eds.), Orthodoxie, Orient und Europa: Kulturbegegnung zwischen Imagination und Realität, vol. 2, Würzburg: LIT Verlag, 2010, 115-142.
  • ‘Biblewomen and the Missionary Ideal of the Hermannsburg Mission in India,’ in Jobst Reller (Hg.), ,,Die Mission ist Weiblich” Missionarsfrauen,Missionsfreudinnen und Bibelfrauen In den ersten beiden Generationen der Hermannsburger Mission, Münster & Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2011: 125-132.
  • ‘Cross, Crown and Culture: Revisiting the Place of the Orients in the Edinburgh 1910,’ in Martin Tamcke and Arthur Manukyan (eds.), Orientalische Christen und Europa: Kulturbegegnung zwischen Interferenz, Partizipation und Antizipation, Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz, 2012, 93-100.
  • ‘Negotiating Borders and Bridges: Indian Biblewomen in Hermannsburg Mission’ in Martin Tamcke and GladsonJathanna (eds.), Construction of the Other, Identification of the Self. German Mission in India, Münster: LIT Verlag, 2012,67–74.
  • ‘Communion Beyond Binaries: The Margins of Mission Revisited,’ in Wati Longchar and P. Mohan Larbeer (eds.), Communion on the Move: Towards a Relevant Theological Education. Essays in Honour of Bishop John Sadananda, Bangalore: BTESSC, 2015, 27-37.
  • ‘Historiographical Re-imaginations: Interrogating Archival Space,’ in P.G. George (ed.), Theological Research in the Global South: Prospects and Challenges, Serampore: SATHRI, 2015, 84-95.
  • ‘White Subalterns: Relocating Missionary Women in the Gendered Historiography of Mission,’ in Dexter Maben (ed.), Borders and Margins: Re-visioning Ministry and Mission, Tiruvalla, Bangalore: CSS and UTC, 2015, 113-128.
  • ‘Kuvempu and M.M. Thomas: Sahrdaya Voices Propagating the Message of Sarvodaya’ in P.G. George and Y.T. Vinayaraj (eds.) Reclaiming Manyness: Re-reading M.M. Thomas in the Light of Indian Christian Theologies, Serampore: SATHRI. 2015, 153-166.
  • ‘Re-inventing Invented Histories: Re-Reading the Idea of History in M. M. Thomas’ in C.I. David Joy and P. Mohan Larbeer (eds.) Journeys into the Deep: Hermeneutical Patterns of M.M. Thomas, Bangalore: BTESSC, 2016, 210-218.
  • ‘Partnership, Friendship and Dialogue’ in Martin Tamcke (ed.) Partnerschaft, Freundschaft und Dialog: Beitraege zum Internationalen Symposium am Lehrstuhl fuer Oekumenische Theologie und Orientalische Kirchen- und Missionsgeschichte, Muenster: LIT, 2016, 17-22.
  • ‘Rethinking Theological Education in Such a Time as This: Intensions for Radical Imagination’ in Y.T. Vinayaraj, Dexter Maben and Woba James (Eds.) Re-imagining Reformation: Essays in Honor of P.G. Gorge, Delhi: ISPCK, 2017, 127-146.
  • ‘Theopoeisis: A New Language in Doing Theology’ in Maros Nicak (ed.) Poetry and Theology, Jihlava/Slovakia: Jan Kerkovsky, 2018, 69-83.
  • ‘Mission Moves beyond Gendered Binaries: History of the Basel Mission Revisited’ (to be published in Basel Mission 200 by the Church of South India-Synod)
  • ‘Negotiating Borders and Bridges: Rethinking Christian Mission in India Today’ (to be published in Borderless Church by the Church of South India-Synod)
  • ‘Postcolonial Re-imaginations: Interrogating Archival Space in Indo-European Encounters’ (to be published in Wir und die ‚Anderen’? Erkundungen im Grenzgebiet von Postkolonialismus und Theologie by Brill, Netherlands)

Journal Articles

  • ‘Understanding Subaltern History: Review of Understanding Subaltern History: Theoretical Tools by V.V. Thomas,’ Gurukul Journal of Theological Studies, 19/1, 2008, 208-210.
  • ‘Indigeneous Religion, Missionaries and Representation: A Reading of the BaselMission Reports (1836-1860) from the Margin,’ Indian Church History Review, 43/1, 2009, 37-61.
  • ‘Missionary Knowledge and Native Experience: Representation of Indian Women in the Basel Missionaries’ Discourse,’ Gurukul Journal of Theological Studies, Vol. XXI, No. 1, January 2010, 90-114.
  • ‘Mode of Mutuality: A Methodological Interrogation to the Gendered Historiography of Christian Mission,’ Master’s Journal of Theology, Vol. 4, Issue2, December 2014, 64-75.
  • ‘Muscular Manhood in Making the Nation: Gendered Face of Jewish Nationalism and Pentecostal Zionism,’ SATHRI Journal, Vol. IX No.2, October 2015, 159-169.
  • ‘Faith, Fear and Freedom in the Face of Empire’ NCC Review, Vol. CXXXVI, No. 03, April 2016, 129-134.
  • ‘Spirit Deified and Spirits Demonized: The Euro-Christian Representation of Bhuta/Spirit Worship in Tulunadu’ SATHRI Journal, Vol. X No.1, April 2016, 26-48.
  •  ‘Relocating M. M. Thomas’ Idea of History in the Face of Imperial Histories’ Religion and Society, Vol. 16, No. 3 & 4, Sept-Oct 2016, 13-25.
  • ‘Gregory the Theo-poet: Re-chanting the Poems of Cappadocian Father Gregory of Nazianzus’SATHRI Journal, Vol. XI, No.3, September 2017, 35-50.

Forthcoming Books

  • Church and Ecumenism (Co-authored with Rohan Gideon – A Council for World Mission Publication)
  • Church and Empire (Co-authored with Y T Vinayaraj) – A Council for World Mission Publication)
  • A History of Christian People in Karnataka (co-authored with C. L. Furtado, H.S. Wilson and Pius Pinto – A Church History Association of India Publication)

PRESENTATIONS (Selected)

  • Reservation: From a Minority Perspective. Paper presented (jointly with N.G.Prasuna and Paul Sudhakar) at the Chennai Intercollegiate Seminar (India), 2007.
  • Negotiating the Margins: Problematising the Indian Christology. Paperpresented at the Pastors’ Conference, Kassel-Hofgeismar (Germany), 4 November2009.
  • A Subaltern Indian Christology: An Affirmation of Humanisation. Paperpresented at the Pastors’ Conference, Kassel-Hofgeismar (Germany), 4 November2009.
  • Cultures in Contact: The Question of Representation and Subjectivity in Mission History. Paper presented at the international conference ‘Kulturen in Kontakt:Herstellung, Struktur und Wirkungeuropäisch-chinesischerInteraktionsräume,’ Georg-August-Universität Göttingen (Germany), 4 July 2010.
  • Krone, Christus und Kaste: Stolpersteine iminterreligiösen Dialog. Eine indischechristlichePerspektive. Paper presented at PartnerschaftsseminarIndien, Alsfeld(Germany), 8 May 2010.
  • Cross, Crown and Culture: Revisiting the Place of the Orients in the Edinburgh 1910. Paper presented in an international conference “Orientalische Christen undEuropa. KulturbegegnungzwischenInterferenz, Partizipation und Antizipation.” Georg-August-Universität Göttingen (Germany), 25-26 June 2010.
  • Biblewomen and the Missionary Ideal of the Hermannsburg Mission in India.Paper presented in an international conference “Die Mission istWeiblich.” Ludwig-Harms Symposium, Ev. -luth. Missionswerk in Niedersachsen, Hermannsburg (Germany), 19-20 November 2010
  • Negotiating Borders and Bridges: Indian Biblewomen in Hermannsburg Mission. Paper presented in an international conference “Konstruktionen desAnderen, Identifikationen des Eigenen. Deutsche Mission in Indien.” Georg-August-Universität Göttingen (Germany), 19 February 2011.
  • Are Omissions Accidents? : Mission Archives between Imagination and Reality.Paper presented in an international conference “Science Transfer as Cultural Dialogue.” FranckescheStiftungen, Halle and RojahMuthiah Research Library, Chennai. Chennai (India), 23-24 February 2012.
  • Hermannsburg Missionary Women and Indian Native Women: Subaltern Agents of Mutual Humanity? Paper presented in an international conference “Frauen in der Hermannsburger Mission im 20. Jh.” Ludwig-Harms Symposium, Ev. -luth.Missionswerk in Niedersachsen, Hermannsburg (Germany), 16-17 November 2012.
  • ‘Engendering’ emotions, ‘embodying’ experiences: encountering a ritually ‘purified’ body of a Biblewoman.Paper presented in an international conference “Body, Emotion and Mind: ‘Embodying’ the Experiences in Indo-European Encounters.”Georg-August-Universität Göttingen (Germany), 23-24 November 2012.
  • For Such a Time as This: Discerning Christian Public Witness. Paper presented in a College Retreat. United Theological College, Bangalore, 29 – 30 July 2014.
  • Historiographical Re-imaginations. Paper presented in a national conference “Theological Research in the Global South: Prospects and Challenges.” SATHRI Jubilee National Consultation, South Asia Theological Research Institute, Senate of Serampore, West Bengal, 15-17 August 2014.
  • Mission of Humanization: Perspectives and Challenges. Paper presented in a Panel on Youth and Human Rights, St. Aloysius College, Mangalore, 12 December 2014.
  • Methodological Issues in History of Christianity. Paper presented in D.Th Research Methodology Seminar. South Asia Theological Research Institute, UTC, Bangalore, 26 May 2015.
  • Partnership, Friendship and Dialogue. Festvortrag on the 60thBirthday of Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Martin Tamcke, Goettingen, Germany, 22 June 2015.
  • Mission Moves beyond Gendered Binaries. Paper presented in an international seminar on “Mission Moves–Bicentenary Celebration of Basel Mission” organized jointly by the CSI-Synod and CSI-KSD, Mangalore, 8-9 October 2015.
  • Postcolonial Historiography: Postcolonial Interrogation of an Archival Research. Paper presented at the ISET-ECC & FFRRC Annual Joint Seminar, ECC/Bangalore, 24-25 November, 2015.
  • Feminist Historiographies: Feminist Methodological Reconstructions. Paper presented at the ISET-ECC & FFRRC Annual Joint Seminar, ECC/Bangalore, 24-25 November, 2015.
  • ‘Engendering’ emotions, ’embodying’ experiences: Reclaiming the body in an Indo-European encounter. Paper presented in an international conference on “Reclaiming the Body: Gender, Sexuality and Violence” organized by the Department of Sociology, University of Pune, 29 February 2016.
  • Revisiting the Idea of History in M. M. Thomas in the face of Invented Histories. Paper presented in the symposium on “Remembering MM Thomas: Re-imagining Christian Public Witness in India Today” organised jointly by Christian Institute for the Study of Religion and Society and Tiruvalla Ecumenical Charitable Trust, UTC, Bangalore, 12-13 May, 2016.
  • Hindu Nationalism and Gendered Imaginations. Lecture given at a Summer Consultation for Theology Students on “Removing the Blinders: Healing in our Work,” organized by the ISET-ECC, Bangalore, 16-20 May, 2016.
  • Postcolonial Re-imaginations. Interrogating Archival Space in Indo-European Encounters. Paper presented at the Conference on “Wir und die ‚Anderen’? ErkundungenimGrenzgebiet von Postkolonialismus? und Theologie” organized by the InstitutfuerEvangelischeTheologie und Religionspaedagogik, Oldenburg University, Germany, 5-6 August 2016.
  • Theological Education and Radical Imagination: Intentions for Alternative Thinking. Paper presented at the Consultation on “Theological Education as Transformative Praxis” organized jointly by the Council for World Mission, BTESSCE and Bishop’s College, Kolkata, 27-30 November, 2016.
  • Theological Creativity and Diversity’ in the History of Christian Thoughts. Paper presented in the Indian Theological Students’ Conference on the theme, “Church amidst Diversity” organized by the Carey Society, United Theological College, Bangalore, 23-25 January 2017.
  • Bible, Empire and Resistance. Paper presented at the consultation on “Resistance and Prophetic Witness” in Kolkata, 3-5 March, 2017.
  • Post-colonial Perspectives on Evangelism: Evangelism as Violence, Sinful Evangelism. Paper presented in the Seminar on “De-centred Perspectives on Evangelism” organized by CWM in Jakarta/Indonesia, 19-23 July 2017.
  • Decolonizing the Divine: Interrogating Victorian Ideals in Asia, book project proposal presented in Fortress Press Writers’ Workshop on “Interrogating and Reconstructing Theology in South Asia” in Bangalore, 25-26 August, 2017.
  • Empire and Globalization. Lecture given at the consultation on “Re-imagining the Public Witness of the Church in South Asia” organized by Christian Institute for the Study of Religion and Society, Bangalore and Ecumenical Institute for Study and Dialogue, Colombo in Colombo/Sri Lanka, 23-27 September 2017. 
  • Evangelism from the Margins. Paper presented in the Consultation on Evangelism organized jointly by WCC and CWM at Bangkok/Thailand from 26 November to 1 December 2017.
  • Negotiating Borders and Bridges: Rethinking Christian Mission. Paper presented in the Consultation on “Rethinking Ecclesia” organized by the Synod of the Church of South India, Chennai, 22-23, February 2018.
  • Competing Fundamentalism in the 21st Century. Lecture given at the Face to Face Programme of the Council for World Mission hosted at Henry Martyn Institute, Hyderabad, 09-11, March 2018.
  • Margins, Marginality and Interreligious Dialogue. Lecture given at the Face to Face Programme of the Council for World Mission hosted at Henry Martyn Institute, Hyderabad, 09-11, March 2018.
  • Jesus and Sharanbasaveshwara: Champions of Social Justice. Paper presented in the Consultation on “The Life and Work of Sharanbasaveshwara” at Sharanbasava University, Gulbarga/Karnataka, 28-29 April 2018.
  • The Reciprocity of Indian Christian Writings and the Indian Secular Writings: A Critical Appraisal. Paper presented in the Writers’ Workshop on “The mighty keyboard: Missional workshop for the writers of 21st Century” organized by CSI-Synod, Chennai, 7-9 June 2018.
  • From Marginality to Mutuality: A Journey Beyond Postcolonialism. Paper presented in an international consultation on “Postcolonialismus und was dann?” organized by Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Missionswissenschaft at Wuppertal/Germany, 09-13 September 2018.
  • Liberation Theology and Beyond: Methodological Issues. Paper presented in the national consultation on “Liberation Theology and Beyond” organized by the Mar Thoma Theological Seminary and Christian Institute for the Study of Religion and Society (CISRS), Kottayam, 17-18 October 2018
  • Revisiting Theological Education in India Today. Paper presented at the Faculty Research Seminar, Gurukul Lutheran Theological College and Research Institute, Chennai, 15 November 2018.
  • The Relationship between Individual and Society in different religious traditions. Held lectures at the Institute of Gandhian Studies, Wardha/Maharashtra, 17-18 November 2018.
  • World Christianities as De-territorializing Movements: Towards a Mission of the Multitude. lecture given at the University of Applied Sciences for Intercultural Theology, Hermannsburg/Germany on 18 December 2018.
  • Social and Ethical Responsibilities of Christian Artists. Lecture delivered in the “Art Camp-2009” organized by the Church of South India-Synod, Chennai on 18 July 2019.
  • Capturing Resistance, Resilience & Gender Justice in Research. Paper presented during the “Theological Colloquium” organized by the CSI-Synod, Chennai on 12 August 2019.
  • Human Sexuality and Gender Diversities: Challenges of Dealing with the Senate Syllabus from the Perspective of History of Christianity, Paper presented during the “National Experts Consultation on Human Sexuality and Gender Diversities” organized by NCCI-ESHA, Nagpur, 13-15 August 2019. 
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