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Katie Hladky

Assistant Professor

Address: 4B Glebe Street, Room 206
Office Hours: MW 11:00 - 1:00 or by appointment
Phone: 843.953.3911
Curriculum Vitae: Download

Katie Hladky is originally from Mantua, Ohio, and the 2011-2012 academic year is her first at the College of Charleston. Katie teaches courses on the history of American religions, African American religions, and gender and sexuality and religion.

In her own words

As a historian of American religions with expertise in African American religions, I teach courses about the development of religions in America; the history of African American religions, including their influence on “mainstream” white culture and the impact of racism on the religious expression of African Americans; and gender and sexuality as it relates to religion.  I chose to pursue a career as a college professor because I have been profoundly impacted by teachers who invested time in me, challenged my assumptions, and taught me to be humbled by the immense amount of knowledge I do not possess. Teaching religion is demanding and exciting because it presents an opportunity to confront students in their own worldviews, to encourage them to think critically and historically about all religious traditions, and finally to help them learn to write persuasively.

In the classroom, I am always both a teacher and a student. I am continually surprised by the ways that my students help me understand familiar materials in new and interesting ways. For me, teaching is a privilege, a passion, and an extension of my own scholarship. I strive to make my teaching challenging in an engaging and accessible way so that students can walk away from their introductory religion courses knowing more then interesting religious trivia for cocktail parties. Instead, I want my students to leave their religion course with life skills: the ability to craft an argument, write effectively, and see the world from multiple perspectives. I want them to leave as better citizens able to thrive in a diverse society. I want them to have new ways of approaching the world and other religions, with skills for thinking critically and the confidence to question their convictions. Learning is a cooperative process that works best for students when they are actively engaged in thinking about difficult material.I relish the moments of cognitive dissonance and clarity that students experience as they make connections, ask questions of the material, or finally breakthrough to understanding a difficult concept.

 Over the next several years, I look forward to teaching courses that help students to better understand the influence of history on the world they live in now. I hope that my teaching ultimately empowers students to realize their potential by helping them see the ways people have acted through history, and the influence they can have on the world around them. I also hope to inculcate in students a respect for the many ways that religion has been practiced throughout history, without overlooking the conflict that various religious and cultural practices have generated.  My research is about the multiracial Faith movement and Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), the largest Christian broadcasting entity in the world. I own a large collection of evangelical Christian materials; bible tracts, trinkets, videos, and other paraphernalia, and I encourage students to stop by my office to view this material for themselves. Finally, I hope to include students in a planned upcoming research project to collect oral histories from longtime residents of the Lowcountry.


2011 Ph.D. American Religious History, Department of Religion Florida State University

2006 M.A. Comparative Religion, Department of Comparative Religion, Miami University of Ohio

2004, B.A. Philosophy and Comparative Religion, Miami University of Ohio

Research Interests

  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community
  • Critical Race Theory
  • American pentecostalism, the Faith movement, and televangelism; specifically, Trinity Broadcasting Network
  • African American Religions
  • Multiracial religious communities

Courses Taught

RELS 101 Approaches to Religion

RELS 105 Introduction to World Religions

RELS 250 Religion in America

RELS 270 African American Religions

RELS 298 Special Topics:  Religion in Charleston and the Lowcountry

RELS 450 Senior Seminar:  Religions and Sex


“I Double-Dog Dare you in Jesus' Name!: Claiming Christian Wealth and the American Prosperity Gospel” in Religion Compass. Forthcoming.

"Islam in North America" in Charles Lippy and Peter Williams, eds. Encyclopedia of Religion in America. Congressional Quarterly Press, 2010: 1083-1091.

“The Prince of the Power of the Air: Media and the End of the World in the Word of Faith Movement” in The Spectator, Spring 2008: 40-52.