Jennifer Reid
Professor of Religion

Ph.D., University of Ottawa, Canada
M.A., University of Ottawa, Canada
B.A., University College of Cape Breton, Canada


In the Classroom: Engaging Students — Setting High Academic Expectations

Jennifer Reid engages her students in the classroom by strongly encouraging them be active participants rather than passive listeners and note-takers. She strives to help them realize they know more than they think they know. By doing this, Jennifer helps put her students in control of the process and in control of the knowledge — something that gives them more self confidence and encourages even further interest in the classroom discussions.

Professional Contacts — Bringing World Renowned Experts to Farmington

Jennifer’s professional standing in her field allows her to bring to Farmington two or three eminent academics to speak to her classes and the wider UMF community each semester. These renowned experts from some of the leading research institutions in the U.S. and around the world come to Farmington to discuss in depth various topics her classes are covering.

For instance, a noted historian of religion from Syracuse University who is involved with the United Nations spoke about Native American land rights issues, and another from Tokyo has spoken at UMF on religion and violence in modern Japan.

During these presentations, students have the opportunity to interact and talk candidly with some of the brightest and most respected minds in the field, an opportunity rarely found at undergraduate colleges.

Outside the Classroom: Innovation and Excitement — Putting Theory into Practice

Jennifer Reid said her students conduct a lot of independent research projects outside of the classroom. In addition, the UMF Religion and Philosophy Club (a student organization) regularly attends and participates in academic conferences, hosts national and international guest speakers, and holds public forums for student presentations. The club provides a platform for further intellectual development and opportunities beyond UMF.

A True Academic — Areas of Special Interest

Jennifer’s academic interests are in colonial and post-colonial religion, exploring the ways in which colonial history has created altered and new religious forms — particularly colonial North America and the impact on indigenous peoples.

Respected in the Field — Noteworthy Accomplishments

Jennifer received a Maine Humanities Council / National Endowment for the Arts grant to present a major academic forum at UMF in 2001, “Religion, Global Culture, and the University; An Institute on the Impact of Globalization on Religion and the Study of Religion. ” She is currently a researcher with the Niwano Peace Foundation’s New Archê & World Peace Project, Tokyo.

She has published extensively in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Japan on a wide range of religious and other topics. Jennifer’s most recent book, In Search of Kluskap: A Journey into Mi’kmaw Myth was published in 2013. Her Religion, Writing, and Colonial Resistance, was published in 2011 and her Louis Riel and the Creation of Modern Canada was published in 2008 and again in 2011, first in the U.S. and then in Canada.

She also wrote Worse Than Beasts, an Anatomy of Melancholy and the Literature of Travel in 17th and 18th Century England; Myth, Symbol, and Colonial Encounter: British and Mi’kmaq in Arcadia, 1700-1867, and edited Religion and the Imagination of Matter, and Religion and Global Culture: New Terrain in the Study of Religion and the Work of Charles H. Long.

Jennifer’s articles have appeared in the Encyclopedia of Religion, The Journal for the Study of Religion, Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses, Papers of the Canadian Society of Church History, The Scottish Journal of Religious Studies, and many others.

A widely respected academic, Jennifer Reid is a frequent presenter at professional conferences, including the annual meeting of the World Congress of the International Association of the History of Religions (Tokyo), the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion (Philadelphia, San Antonio, Atlanta, Nashville, Chicago), the annual meeting of the Canadian Society of Church History (Quebec), to name just a few.

Outside of Academia — Personal Interests and Activities

Outside of her busy academic and international scholar role, Jennifer is passionate about cooking — particularly Southeast Asian cuisine.

She also enjoys reading (mostly fiction), writes essays, and travels extensively.

Jennifer lives in Farmington.