Professor of World Religions
Acting Chair, spring 2014
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Carol Zaleski earned her B.A. from Wesleyan University and her M.A. and Ph.D. in the study of religion from Harvard University. She has been teaching philosophy of religion, world religions and Christian thought at Smith College since 1989.
Zaleski is the author of Otherworld Journeys: Accounts of Near-Death Experience in Medieval and Modern Times and The Life of the World to Come (both Oxford University Press). She co-authored, with Philip Zaleski, Prayer: A History (Houghton Mifflin), The Book of Heaven (Oxford) and The Book of Hell (forthcoming, Oxford). She is currently working on a book about monasticism, and collaborating with Philip Zaleski on a study of the Inklings—C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams and their circle. She is a columnist and editor-at-large for Christian Century, and has contributed articles and reviews to First Things, The New York Times Book Review, America, Parabola, Second Spring, The Journal of Religion and The Journal of the History of Ideas.
In addition to team-taught courses in world religions and Christian studies, Zaleski regularly teaches Philosophy of Religion; The Catholic Philosophical Tradition; Psychology of Religion; The Inklings; William James; Belief in God; and Immortality.