Reconstruction 10.1 (2010)

Return to Contents>>


Michael Benton is the Reviews Editor of Reconstruction. Bio

Marjo Buitelaar is associate professor Anthropology of Muslim societies at the Faculty of Theology & Religious Studies, University of Groningen, the Netherlands. Her present research focuses on the narrative construction of identity by descendants of Moroccan migrants in the Netherlands and on the practice of Islam in everyday life in Morocco. [article]

Christina and Barie Fez-Barringten. Christina was born in Leipzig Germany, into a family of builders and in interior designers. In her youth, she experienced World War 2. After the war, she witnessed the continuous senseless deterioration of her city, which already suffered from the results of heavy bombing.

Her home and her father's business were destroyed and because of the Russian occupation and its communistic system, there was no hope to rebuild and to start new. Christina began to study philosophy and theology at Leipzig University, but in 1952 she was forced to fear for her safety and fled to Munich in West Germany. During her stay in Munich, she had her own antique business and repaired antique porcelain. Later, she accepted the counsel of a relative to continue her studies in the U.S.A. In 1956, Christina arrived in New York City, planning to study philosophy at Columbia University. When she became aware of the dynamic modern art movement in that powerful city, she changed her goals and began to study fine arts and fashion illustration under Dianna at the Art Students League of New York City. At that time, she came to meet and know artists Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein, and others.

In 1958, while exhibiting her paintings at an outdoor show in Greenwich Village, Christina was introduced to Paul Lefson by Max Waldman, a well-known theatrical photographer.

Paul Lefson and Christina fell in love and were married. Christina continued her studies and the couple lived in their art studio/apartment on East 31st Street where Christina began to develop her creations in plexiglass. Plexiglass was not appreciated as a medium in fine art at the time. Christina Lefson was fascinated with its multiple uses, transparency, and flexibility. She ventured forth to be among the first artists to use this new and unique material to create three-dimensional art forms. Sadly, in 1963, her husband Paul died in an accident while on a business trip to Chicago. Christina hoped to overcome her grief with total concentration on her work. She decided to continue her studies; this time in the Department of Fine Arts at Columbia University. She moved to the International House on Riverside Drive where Howard Cook was president at the time. Graciously, Mr. Cook offered the artist a large room in the building where she could continue to work on her unique sculptures. Soon after, during an exhibit of her works in the International House, J.D. Rockefeller chose her sculptures to be exhibited at the Chase Manhattan Bank on Wall Street. She also had her plexiglass sculptures represented at the Frank Lawrence Gallery on 57th Street in New York City.

In 1966, the widowed artist married Barie Fez-Barringten, a student of architecture at Yale University. She moved to New Haven, Ct. and exhibited her works at The Boston Road Art Gallery. Christina Fez-Barringten was also involved in a new trend called "Art and Technology" with artists like Warhol and Rauschenberg and a group of employees from Bell-Laboratories, combining art with advanced techniques of lasers called E.A.T. (Experiments In Art and Technology)

Later while living with her husband in Puerto Rico, Christina created the exciting poster like collages. After moving to Tennessee the artist exhibited her works at the Jonathan Art Gallery in the city of Jackson. She also taught painting for the Tennessee Arts Counsel of the Arts, and won several prizes for her sculptures.
In 1980, Barie's business brought the couple to Saudi Arabia. There. out of necessity, Christina developed a unique style of acrylic paintings. To adhere to the strict Islamic rules, which allowed no human images in art, she created large paintings with colorful, abstract patterns. These accentuated the stark, wide walls so common in that country. In 1986, Christina Fez-Barringten had a major exhibition in Ryadh sponsored by then U.S. Ambassador Walter Cutler. She participated in many group shows and was an art juror and teacher during her stay in Saudi Arabia. [article]

Dr. Donald Gelpi S.J. became an Emeritus Professor at the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley in 1999 and continues both teaching and publication. Prof. Gelpi has authored more than 20 books and has published numerous articles. Hailing from New Orleans, he entered the Jesuit order in 1951. Of his many writings, including his recently published autobiography entitled, Closer Walk: Confessions of a US Jesuit Yat, his text, Pierce and Theology: Essays in the Authentication of Doctrine, serves as the basis for the essay included in this issue.[article]

Dr. Nate Hinerman teaches in the School of Nursing and the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of San Francisco. He serves as Chair of the San Francisco Bay Area Network for End-of-Life Care, and he is also active in hospice as a volunteer therapist. His research is interdisciplinary, and includes topics in death and dying, religion and psychology, human suffering, and special areas in philosophy of religion and systematic theology. He also participates as a leading organizer of the Making Sense Of: series of research projects, which in turn which in turn belong to the Probing the Boundaries programmes of Inter-Disciplinary.Net. ID.NET is an international effort aiming to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore discussions which are innovative and challenging. [article]

Dr. Susan M. Kilonzo lectures at Maseno University, Kenya. Her area of specialization is Sociology of Religion (and community development). She is a multidisciplinary researcher in the fields of religion and culture, religion and peacebuilding; religion and development; youth studies; and, HIV and AIDS in Africa. [article]

Kenza Oumlil is a doctoral candidate in Communication at Concordia University. She is interested in representations of Arabs and Muslims in the media, gender and critical race studies, postcolonial theory, and in alternative media. Kenza received a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts, both in Speech Communication, from San Francisco State University. [article]

Nirvana Saad is a PhD student at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands. Her dissertation is on the global culture of Ramadan in modern Cairo. She is also one of the editorial board members of the Journal of Middle East Media. [article]

Dr. Erin Steuter and Dr.Deborah Wills are the authors of At War with Metaphor: Media Propaganda and Racism in the War on Terror (Lexington Books, 2008). Deborah Wills is an associate professor of English at Mount Allison University. She has received awards for her teaching and her writing; her research areas include cultural studies, critical theory and genre, and violence in contemporary literature and film. Erin Steuter is an associate professor of Sociology where she specializes in examining the ideological representations of the news. Recipient of multiple awards for her teaching and research, her research and published works have appeared in Political Communication and Persuasion, Canadian Journal of Communication, Journal of American and Comparative Cultures, and other noted academic journals. [article]

Kathleen Vandenberg is a Lecturer in Rhetoric at Boston University and an Associate Editor for Rhetorical Review. She earned her Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Composition at The Catholic University of America in 2005, and her most recent articles include "Searching for the 'New' on Newbury: The Transformation of Space and Self" (Queen: A Journal of Rhetoric and Power, Fall 2009), and "René Girard and the Rhetoric of Consumption? (Contagion, Fall 2006). She is currently working on a concerning rhetoric and 1960's advertising. [article]

Return to Top

ISSN: 1547-4348. All material contained within this site is copyrighted by the identified author. If no author is identified in relation to content, that content is  © Reconstruction, 2002-2010.