Seat, Karen K
Head and Director

Dr. Karen Seat specializes in U.S. religious history, American evangelicalism, and gender studies. In 2012, Dr. Seat began serving as director of the Religious Studies Program, and in 2014 she was appointed head of the Department of Religious Studies and Classics. In addition, she serves as Director of the School of International Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (SILLC). In 2022, she was named one of two inaugural recipients of the University of Arizona’s Distinguished Head/Director’s Award, and was conferred the title Distinguished Scholar.

Her publications include “Providence Has Freed Our Hands”: Women’s Missions and the American Encounter with Japan (Syracuse University Press), on nineteenth-century Protestant women's mission movements and their impact on American ideologies regarding gender, race, Christianity, and civilization. Her current research focuses on conservative Christians' engagement with American politics in modern American history. She is co-editor, with Elizabeth Flowers, of A Marginal Majority: Women, Gender, and a Reimagining of Southern Baptists (University of Tennessee Press). Her current book project is titled Free Market Family Values: The Rise of Neoliberal Christianity in the United States. She teaches courses on American religious history and gender studies in religion.

Dr. Seat received her Ph.D. in Religion from Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.