About the Show
Welcome to Sex and the Sacred, where religion, history, and sexuality collide! SatS is a podcast that explores the history of world religions, with a focus on moments of interest in women's, gender, and sexuality studies. Each episode explores a different topic, with show notes posted right here on the website. Head to the "Episodes" page to start listening, or the "Contact Us" page to suggest a topic for us to explore!
Bringing Scholarly Research to You
One of SatS's primary goals is to make academic research accessible to all listeners. Modern scholarship is rapidly expanding to include the study of women, gender, and sexuality in relation to religious history, and we want to share it with you!
Each episode of the podcast includes both a storytelling element and a literature review; all of our analyses originate in these academic works. The show notes - available in the "Show Notes" tab - always include a list of the sources we discuss on the air, in addition to the works that we relied on but didn't directly reference. Curious listeners who want to pursue the material further can access this growing library of sources as a way of starting their own research!
SatS, at its core, is a project designed to encourage interest and research into religious studies, in any of its myriad forms. Our greatest hope is that you, our listeners, will find an episode that speaks to you and makes you want to "find out more."
This, in our opinion, is the highest goal of scholarship: to inspire the next wave of scholars. If we can change the life of a single listener, we've done our job. As film director Jennifer Lee said, "Be fearless in the pursuit of that which sets your soul on fire" - we hope that Sex and the Sacred acts as the flint for your spark, and that we can ignite your interest in the history of religions.
As you might have guessed by now, I am a Religious Studies historian dedicated to the junction of religion and sexuality. I am currently pursuing my Masters of Theological Studies at Harvard Divinity School, with a methodology focus in Women and Religion. I graduated from Penn State University in 2021 with degrees in Global and International Studies, History, and Religious Studies. My honors thesis worked to contextualize Pope Gregory the Great's relationship to Mary Magdalene, and called for further research in the junction between religious studies and women's history.
My goal in creating Sex and the Sacred is both personal and professional. Creating a library of historical moments important to my field makes my job a lot easier - at least as far as finding paper topics is concerned - and editing each episode helps me broaden my technical skills. I also wanted to contribute to the growing body of public educational tools, and to make academic research more accessible; you'll have to let me know if I've succeeded there!
As I continue in my academic career, I hope to share my ardor for history through SatS. I hope that listeners will continue to support my crazy idea and, perhaps, take an interest in the material themselves.
Sex and the Sacred, despite my best efforts, would not exist without the help of some incredibly important people! First, I'd like to thank my boyfriend Andrew, for having more faith in me than I ever believed possible. Second, thank you to my dad, who helped me overcome all the logistical obstacles necessary to get this podcast off the ground. Thank you to my sister for being my first merchandise customer, and to my friends for their enthusiasm, constructive feedback, and unending support of the show and its creator. Thank you also to my professors and mentors who encouraged me to pursue a career in academia, and to explore public education; I could not be the scholar I am without you.
Finally, thank YOU dear listeners, for giving this crazy lady a star to shoot for. I hope that Sex and the Sacred will be the start of something wonderful for you.
Enjoy the show!
Anna C. Zuckerman
Anna Zuckerman is a Masters student at Harvard Divinity School. She lives in the Boston area with her boyfriend Andrew and their two cats, Auggie and Margot. She can usually be found at home - curating the décor in the living room yet again - or in a café somewhere, tea and book in hand.