FORE Spotlights Archive

Here you’ll find all of the videos in our new weekly video /podcast series, FORE Spotlights.
Go here to listen to these episodes as audio podcasts. 

FORE Spotlights Series ~ Inaugural Episode 
Mary Evelyn Tucker & John Grim

You can also listen to an audio podcast of this episode here.
In the inaugural video of our new Spotlights series, founders and directors, Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim, speak about recent developments in the field of religion and ecology, recent developments on the global stage, and all of the Forum’s new projects, with a focus on the Forum Advisory Group–a collaborative project composed of 72 of the top scholars in their fields.

FORE Spotlights Series ~ Ep2 Hava Tirosh Samuelson 9.28.2020
You can also listen to an audio podcast of this episode here.
Scholar Hava Tirosh Samuelson, of Arizona State University, speaks about her work and the intersection of Judaism and ecology in our second episode of FORE Spotlights.

FORE Spotlights Series ~ Evan Berry, 10.5.2020
This week’s episode features Evan Berry, an assistant professor of environmental humanities in the School of History, Philosophy, and Religious Studies at Arizona State University. Sam and Evan discuss a variety of topics related to the field of religion and ecology, including the role of religion in the environmental humanities, religious responses to climate change, and the place of religion in the public sphere. 

FORE Spotlights Series ~ Christopher Carter, 10.12.2020
This week’s episode of Spotlights features Rev. Dr. Christopher Carter, an assistant professor and the assistant chair of the Theology and Religious Studies department at the University of San Diego, in San Diego, California. He is also the co-creator of Racial Resilience, an anti-racism and anti-bias training program that utilizes the combined insights of contemplative practices and critical race theories. His work focuses particularly on the ways in which ecological spaces impact black, Indigenous, and other people of color (BIPOC)—a topic particularly relevant this week, following the second Monday in October, which is celebrated across the United States as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 5, Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim, Yale University
In this episode of Spotlights, Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim talk with the host (Sam Mickey) about the new encyclical from Pope Francis, Fratelli Tutti. They provide historical, religious, and ecological context for understanding what this encyclical means and how it is relevant for efforts to create a more loving, just, and open world.

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 6, Tara Trapani, Forum on Religion and Ecology
This week’s episode of Spotlights features the chief administrator for the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology, Tara Trapani. She talks about her work with the Forum, including some exciting, new projects happening there, especially the freshly redesigned website. She leads us through the website, navigating the abundance and diversity of news, events, bibliographies, multimedia resources, and so much more.

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 7, Mitchell Thomashow

This week’s episode features Mitchell Thomashow, renowned educator and author, with a brand new book coming out this week, To Know the World: A New Vision for Environmental Learning. The discussion covers some of the main themes and topics of the book, including the Anthropocene, memory, interdisciplinary thinking, improvisation, adaptive and perennial learning, and cosmopolitan bioregionalism. You can find more information about the new book and other aspects of his work on his website:

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 8, Chris Ives, Stonehill College
This episode of Spotlights features Chris Ives, professor of religious studies at Stonehill College. He discusses his work with Zen Buddhism, ethics, and ecology, including teaching and writing as well as practice and activism. His latest book, Zen on the Trail, draws on his personal experiences with hiking and backpacking to describe the meditative power of walking and pilgrimage. You can find more information here:

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 9, Andreas Karelas, Re-volv

This week’s episode features Andreas Karelas, executive director of RE-volv– a nonprofit organization that empowers communities to invest in solar energy–and author of the new book, Climate Courage: How Tackling Climate Change Can Build Community, Transform the Economy, and Bridge the Political Divide in America (Beacon Press, 2020). Andreas discusses community-oriented solutions to climate change, including the role of wisdom traditions, faith communities, and virtues of courage, simplicity, and gratitude. You can find more information about RE-volve here: Details about the book Climate Courage can be found here:

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 10, Whitney Bauman, Florida International University
This week’s episode of Spotlights features Whitney Bauman, PhD, Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Florida International University, and co-founder and co-director of the nonprofit research center, Counterpoint: Navigating Knowledge. Whitney discusses the personal and professional influences that shape his engagement with religion and ecology, and he talks about some ideas from his recent work, like uncertainty, wicked problems, Critical Planetary Romanticism (CPR), and the interruption of the chronological order of time during the coronavirus pandemic. Check out this recent essay from Whitney, “Sourdough Time and the Time of Protest: Reflections on the Pace of Planetary Becoming”…

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 11, Sam Mickey, Forum on Religion and Ecology
This week’s episode of Spotlights is all about the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion (AAR), which is taking place virtually this year, from November 30 to December 10. Our host (Sam Mickey) discusses the importance of the AAR for scholars of theology and religion, with specific attention to the AAR groups that focus on issues related to ecology, including the Religion and Ecology group as well as groups on Animals and Religion, Religion and Food, and Space, Place, and Religion. Spotlights will return with reports on the event in our next couple of episodes. Go here for a list of the main panels on religion and ecology this year:…A searchable version of the Program Book for this year’s meeting can be found here:…

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 12, Kimberly Carfore, University of San Francisco
In this week’s episode, Sam Mickey talks with Kimberly Carfore, PhD, who is an environmental studies professor at the University of San Francisco and a steering committee member for the Religion and Ecology unit of the American Academy of Religion. They reflect on the first week of this year’s virtual meeting of the AAR, focusing specifically on ecologically oriented panels, including panels on animals and race, nature mysticism, eco-theology, Buddhism and animals, the work of the Buddhist activist Joanna Macy, Muslim environmentalisms, and case studies in religion and ecology.

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 13, Jacob Erickson, Trinity College Dublin

This week’s episode of the FORE podcast features Jacob Erickson, PhD, Assistant Professor of Theological Ethics in the School of Religion at Trinity College Dublin. He introduces some of his work with theopoetics and queer ecology, and he shares some reflections on this year’s virtual meeting of the American Academy of Religion, talking about some ways that nature, cosmology, ecology, bodies, and affect showed up in various panels and in the virtual media ecosystem of the conference itself. You can learn more about his work here:…

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 14, Sarah Pike, California State University, Chico
This episode of Spotlights features Dr. Sarah Pike, professor in the Comparative Religion & Humanities Department at California State University, Chico. She discusses her ethnographic and historical research at the intersection of religion and ecology, particularly with New Age and Neopagan communities. She also talks about her most recent book, For the Wild: Ritual and Commitment in Radical Eco-Activism (University of California Press, 2017). Since this is our winter solstice episode, she also provides some reflections on this seasonal event. You can find more information about her work here:…

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 15, Tyler Tully, University of Oxford
This week’s episode of the Forum on Religion and Ecology podcast features Tyler M. Tully, a doctoral candidate in religious studies and the Arthur Peacocke Graduate Scholar in Science and Religion at the University of Oxford. He talks about his work at the intersection of Indigenous religion, critical race theory, traditional ecological knowledge (TEK), secularism, and (post)humanism. He also discusses his dissertation, “Critical Materialisms: Power, Place, and Personhood in White and Black ‘Red’ Spaces.” Learn more about Tyler’s work here:… You can find more information about Indigenous traditions on the Forum website:…

FORE Spotlights ~ Episode 16, Vijaya Nagarajan, University of San Francisco
This week’s episode of Spotlights features Vijaya Nagarajan, PhD, an associate professor in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies and in the Program of Environmental Studies at the University of San Francisco. She talks about her teaching, research, and activism at the intersection of Hinduism and ecology, with particular attention to her book, Feeding A Thousand Souls: Women, Ritual and Ecology in India—An Exploration of the Kōlam (Oxford University Press, 2018). You can learn more about her book here: More information about Hinduism and ecology can be found on the Forum website:…

Spotlights ~ Ep. 17, Timothy Grieve Carlson (Rice University) and Russell Powell (Boston College)

This week’s episode of Spotlights features Russell Powell, PhD, and Timothy Grieve-Carlson. Russell is a visiting professor of Environmental Theology and Ethics at Boston College, and Timothy is a doctoral candidate in Rice University’s Department of Religion. They invite early-career scholars to participate in a newly emerging reading group, the Religion and Ecology Early-Career Scholars (REECS) Reading Group, which will host regular meetings (virtually) for scholars to share their work with one another. If you’re interested in participating in this reading group, you can email Timothy (trg4 [at] or Russell (powellru [at] for more information. We will also have more information for you about this new reading group in upcoming editions of the Forum on Religion and Ecology newsletter:…