Campus News

Long Named Kenan Professor of Religion

Story posted February 15, 1998


BRUNSWICK, Maine -- Burke O. Long of Brunswick has been named the William R. Kenan Professor of Religion at Bowdoin College. A professor of religion at Bowdoin since 1979, Long is a Biblical scholar who has authored or edited numerous publications on religious studies.

"Burke Long's research into the study of the Bible and its role in American culture has been widely recognized in the scholarly community, and he has brought its results into the classroom in a truly exemplary way," said Bowdoin Dean for Academic Affairs Charles Beitz. "This combination of excellent scholarship and rigorous teaching is exactly what the Kenan chair is meant to honor and support."

Long is the author of four books and numerous articles. His books include "Planting and Reaping Albright: Politics, Ideology, and Interpreting the Bible" (Pennsylvania State University Press, 1996), "The Problems of Etiological Narrative in the Old Testament (Tpelmann, 1968) and two volumes "Kings 1" (1984) and "Kings 2" (1991) for a 24-volume series "The Forms of the Old Literature" (Eerdmans).

Long is the former president of the Holocaust Human Rights Center of Maine and has been awarded fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, the Society of Biblical Literature, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Center for Biblical Research and Archives.

A graduate of Randolph-Macon College, earned his master's degree and doctorate from Yale University. In 1983, he won a Senior Fulbright Award for study in Israel. Prior to joining the Bowdoin faculty in 1968, he taught at Wellesley College. He was promoted to full professor in 1979. He has been a visiting professor at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Emory University and the London School of Economics. At Bowdoin, Long has served as department chair and chair of the Committee on Appointments, Promotion, and Tenure.

The Kenan Professorship was established in 1975 by the College's Governing Boards "to support and encourage a scholar-teacher whose enthusiasm for learning, commitment to teaching and sincere personal interest to students will enhance the learning process and make an effective contribution to Bowdoin College's undergraduate community." It honors William R. Kenan Jr., a chemist, engineer and industrialist from Wilmington, N.C.

There are two Kenan Professorships at Bowdoin. The other is held by Helen L. Cafferty, professor of German and the Humanities. Previous Kenan professors included Edward Pols, professor humanities; Roger Howell Jr., former Bowdoin president and professor of history; and David Kertzer, professor of anthropology.

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