Jana Riess

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Jana Riess
BornJana Kathryn Riess
(1969-12-13) December 13, 1969 (age 49)
United States
OccupationWriter
LanguageEnglish
NationalityAmerican
EducationPhD
Alma materColumbia University
Period1990s-present
GenreReligion
SpousePhil Smith[1]
ChildrenJerusha (born c. 1999)[2]

Jana Kathryn Riess (born December 13, 1969)[3][4] is an American writer and editor.

Riess' writings have focused on American religions, usually on organized movements such as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) and The Church of Christ, Scientist.

Background[edit]

Riess was born in the US Midwest, one of two children.[5] Her father[6] abandoned the family (mother Phyllis[7] and Jana; by that time the brother was on his own) without warning in 1984.[8]

Riess has a Bachelor's degree from Wellesley College. She received a Master's degree in theology from the Princeton Theological Seminary and a PhD in American Religious studies from Columbia University. Riess is a Religion and American Studies professor at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She and husband Phil Smith reside in Cincinnati.[9] A convert to the LDS Church, Riess has spoken at Brigham Young University Women’s Conference and other gatherings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, as well as professional conferences. She lives in Kentucky with her husband and daughter.

Writings[edit]

Among the books by Riess are What Would Buffy Do? and an abridgment of the Book of Mormon with commentary. Riess is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, having converted as an adult.[10] Riess is an expert on religion in literature. In 2001 she moderated a debate over whether the Harry Potter books were a tract for witchcraft.[11] She has been the religion book editor for Publishers Weekly.[9]

Tweeting the Bible[edit]

On October 4, 2009, Riess began a project to tweet the bible. Her "Twible" quest concluded in January 2013. Each tweet summarizes a chapter of the bible. Riess tweets the bible in order and plans to hit all 1,189 chapters in 140 characters.[12]

Works[edit]

Books
  • Riess, Jana (2002), The Spiritual Traveler: Boston and New England: A Guide to Sacred Sites and Peaceful Places, Mahwah, NJ: HiddenSpring, ISBN 978-1-58768-008-3
  • —— (2004), What Would Buffy Do?: The Vampire Slayer as Spiritual Guide, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, ISBN 978-0-7879-6922-6
  • ——; Bigelow, Christopher Kimball (2005), Mormonism for Dummies, Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, ISBN 978-0-7645-7195-4
  • —— (2005), The Book of Mormon: Selections Annotated and Explained, Woodstock, VT: SkyLight Paths, ISBN 1-59473-076-8
  • Ogilbee, Mark; Riess, Jana (2006), American Pilgrimage: Eleven Sacred Journeys and Spiritual Destinations, Brewster, MA: Paraclete Press, ISBN 978-1-55725-447-4
  • __ (2011), Flunking Sainthood: A Year of Breaking the Sabbath, Forgetting to Pray, and Still Loving My Neighbor, Brewster, MA: Paraclete Press, ISBN 978-1-55725-660-7
Articles
Other
  • Riess, Jana (1991), "The Saints Go Marching In: Mormonism in American Politics, 1970–1990", [Honors thesis], Wellesley, MA: Department of Religion, Wellesley College Missing or empty |title= (help)
  • —— (2000), "Heathen in Our Fair Land: Anti-Polygamy and Protestant Women's Missions to Utah, 1869–1910", [PhD Thesis], New York: Columbia University Missing or empty |title= (help)
  • Bigelow, Christopher Kimball (2007), Jana Riess (ed.), The Timechart History of Mormonism from Premortality to the Present, Bassingbourne, Hertfordshire, UK: Worth Press, ISBN 978-1-903025-40-6

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Flunking Sainthood, pp. 5, 153
  2. ^ Flunking Sainthood, pp. 19, 56
  3. ^ "The Book of Mormon: selections annotated and explained". Copyright Catalog (1978 to present). United States Copyright Office. Retrieved June 21, 2010.
  4. ^ Flunking Sainthood, p. 158
  5. ^ She has an older brother, John (ref. Flunking Sainthood, pp. 58, 168)
  6. ^ Her father died at age 71 in Mobile, Alabama, in October 2010 (Flunking Sainthood, pp. 166–169)
  7. ^ Annotated Book of Mormon, p. xix
  8. ^ Flunking Sainthood, pp. 166–169
  9. ^ a b Riess, Jana (September 2006). "How to Give a Sacrament Meeting Talk: An Open Letter to Converts" (PDF). Sunstone Magazine (142): 55–57. Retrieved June 21, 2010..
  10. ^ "My dad was an angry atheist . . My mom was considerably more charitable but no more interested in organized religion . ." (Flunking Sainthood, p. 1)
  11. ^ Deseret News, 9 December 2001
  12. ^ "Tweeting the Bible", Patheos

External links[edit]