Journal of Media and Religion
Fig. 1. Courtesy of the Journal of Media and Religion.

Journal of Media and Religion released its new issue (Vol. 14, Issue 1, 2015). The issue looks at the media's role in silencing religious dialogue among U.S. Muslims, and other topics.

Jim Y. Trammell: “Homosexuality Is Bad for Me”: An Analysis of Homosexual Christian Testimonies in Christianity Today Magazine

This article reviews first-person testimonials written by gay and lesbian Christians in the evangelical newsmagazine Christianity Today between 2000 and 2010 to identify the common and dominant themes on how homosexual Christians negotiate their faith with their sexualities. It addresses how Christianity Today affirms the call by some queer theorists to provide a space for gays and lesbians to speak in their own voices, while framing their experiences so as to uphold, rather than disrupt, evangelical beliefs of homosexuality. The article discusses the strategies used by evangelical media to negotiate between acknowledging the lived experiences of gay and lesbian Christians without challenging traditional beliefs about homosexuality. It also considers how evangelical media appropriate gay and lesbian voices to limit what it means to be a gay Christian rather than explore new perspectives on religiosity and homosexuality.

Kathy Brittain Richardson & Carol J. Pardun: The New Scroll Digital Devices, Bible Study and Worship

Using survey and focus group methodology, this study examined what highly religious people think about mobile technology as an enhancement to the individual and corporate spiritual life. Results indicated that even church members over 60 years old embraced newer technologies both within their place of worship as well as at home. Sunday school and Bible study teachers were more comfortable and enthusiastic about the uses of mobile technology for spiritual growth than nonteachers. Participants in the focus group not only understood the benefit of mobile technology but also acknowledged the distraction that often occurred. Regardless of their enthusiasm toward mobile technology, respondents also were adamant that the scripture had special meaning whether viewed electronically or within the well-worn pages of the family Bible.

Mariam F. Alkazemi: Mediating Silence: The Media's Role in Silencing Religious Dialogue Among U.S. Muslims

Using the spiral of silence as a theoretical framework, survey data were gathered to examine the degree to which the mass media influence dialogue about religion among Muslim Americans. Survey data were collected from members of religious and cultural organizations across the United States in summer 2012. Participants (N = 166) responded to an electronic questionnaire that addressed several variables, including media use, religiosity, willingness to communicate about religion, tolerance for disagreement about religion, and receiver's apprehension about religion. The results show that Muslims who watch more television are less likely to be willing to communicate about religion within the context of an interpersonal relationship. This study contributes to the scholarship of media and religion by providing evidence of the spiral of silence phenomenon when the minority group is a religious one.

Stephen R. Barnard: Review of: Promoting Peace, Inciting Violence: The Role of Religion and Media, by J. Mitchell

Ibrahim N. Abusharif: Review of: News Media in the Arab World: A Study of 10 Arab and Muslim Countries, by B. Gunter and R. Dickinson, eds.

Lindsay D. Grace: Review of: Playing with Religion in Digital Games, by H. Campbell and G. Grieve, eds.

Glen M. Johnson: Review of: Faithful passages: American Catholicism in Literary Culture, 1844–1931, by J. E. Ryan

The latest issue of the Journal of Media and Religion is available here.