Susan Carter Susan Carter

Adjunct Professor
Women's Spirituality & Transformative Inquiry
Philosophy and Religion Department
School of Consciousness and Transformation

PhD, MA, California Institute of Integral Studies

BA, Lewis and Clark College

Susan Carter holds an M.A. in Women’s Spirituality and a Ph.D. in Humanities/Philosophy of Religion from The California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), where she is an adjunct full professor teaching interdisciplinary courses in several departments, including Women's Spirituality, as well as serving on a variety of dissertation committees. 

Susan is also Chair of the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (MAIS) department at Marylhurst University in Portland, Oregon.  She is active in university governance and co-chairs the Graduate Faculty Council and the Faculty Principles and Policies Committee.

Susan is President of the Pacific Northwest region's American Academy of Religion (AAR) / Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) / American School of Oriental Research (ASOR), and co-chair of the Arts and Religion program unit.  She also serves as consultant to Riane Eisler's Center for Partnership Studies and its initiatives, such as The Caring Economy Campaign (CEC), and the Spiritual Alliance to Stop Intimate Violence (SAIV).

She serves on the editorial board of the Interdisciplinary Journal of Partnership Studies (a peer reviewed international open-access online journal), for which she has written several articles (view here and here). 

As a feminist scholar and an avid advocate of volunteerism and community-based learning, Susan is actively involved in the non-profit sector, and has served on a number of boards that promote education and empowerment of underserved populations, cross-cultural understanding, and the arts. She has formed and directed a 501[c][3] foundation, and consults with California Bay Area and Pacific Northwest educational institutions to help promote community service. In addition, she presents nationally and internationally on diverse educational, partnership, cultural and spiritual topics.

Susan’s interdisciplinary work is informed by looking to ancient cultures for ideas that may help shape our future.  Her academic and personal interests come together with the study of women’s spirituality and prehistoric symbolism and art as an expression of ancient spiritual traditions.  Her research includes the prehistoric origins of the Japanese sun goddess, linking this goddess’ influence on contemporary political discussion of women’s right of ascendancy to the Chrysanthemum throne.  Additionally, her ancestral roots (and Sami indigenous lineage) inform her research into women’s roles in contemporary Sweden, women’s possible roles in Scandinavian prehistory, Scandinavian mythology, and her special interest in the ancient rock carvings of Sweden.

2013

2012

2010

2009

National Presentations:
American Academy of Religion (Regional and National Meetings)

2014 University of Calgary. Calgary, Alberta, Canada (Regional)

  • Co-chair of "Arts and Religion" section. Individual paper/presentation entitled: "Maps, Metaphors, and Manifestations: Spiritual Continuity in Rock Art, Poetry, and Joiks in Sámi Culture."


2013 Seattle University. Seattle, Washington. (Regional)

  • Co-chair of "Arts and Religion" section. Individual paper/presentation entitled:  "The Mirror: Spiritual Symbol and Icon in Literature and Art throughout the Ages"


2012 Concordia University. Portland, Oregon. (Regional)

  • Co-chair of "Arts and Religion" section. Individual paper/presentation entitled: "The Divine Female Sun as Depicted in Japanese Religion and the Arts: From Ancient Artifacts to Contemporary Anime."


2011 Gonzaga University. Spokane, Washington. (Regional)

  • Co-chair of "Arts and Religion" section. Individual electronic poster presentation (mini- documentary): "Spirited Images: Rock Carvings as Spiritual Expression in Ancient Scandinavia." May 2011.


2010 University of Victoria. Victoria, B.C., Canada. (Regional)

  • Co-Chair/organizer, Special Topic Session: "Arts and Religion." Individual paper/presentation entitled: "Impermanence in the Enduring Arts of Japan: Heian and Kamakura periods." Pacific Northwest Region Annual Meeting. May 2010.


2009 Pacific Lutheran University. Tacoma, Washington. (Regional)

  • Co-Chair/organizer, Special Topic Session: "Arts and Religion." Individual paper/presentation entitled: "Scandinavian Rock Art: A Form of Embodied Spiritual Expression?" Pacific Northwest Region Annual Meeting. April 2009.


2008 George Fox University. Newberg, Oregon. (Regional)

  • "Female Divinity in World Spiritual Traditions: Contemporary Relevance for Women." Panel Organizer, presenter and respondent. Individual paper/ presentation entitled: "Amaterasu-o-mi-kami: The Japanese Sun Goddess and Her Continuing Reign." Women and Religion Section, Pacific Northwest Region Annual Meeting. May 2008.


2007 Graduate Theological Union. Berkeley, California. (Regional) 

  • "Stretching Our View Beyond Received Wisdom: Images of Older Wisdoms from Eastern and Western Spiritual Traditions." Panel organizer and presenter. Individual presentation entitled: "The Sun as Divine Female Symbol: Survived and Subsumed." Religion and the Arts Section, Western Region Annual Meeting. March 2007.


2001 Denver, Colorado. (National) 

  • "Amaterasu-o-mi-kami: Great Ancestor of the Emperor and Mother of the Japanese Nation." Paper presentation. Japanese Religion Section, AAR National Annual Meeting. November 2001.


Other Presentations (selective):

2012 Servant Leadership Conference. Marylhurst University, Portland, Oregon. Presentation and Workshop:

  • "Caring Economics: Not a Contradiction in Terms." March 2012. 


2005 Second World Congress on Matriarchal Studies.

  • "The Japanese Sun Goddess Amaterasu: From Ancient Matristic Roots to Contemporary Cultural Relevance." Presentation (by invitation only).  Austin, Texas. September 29-October 2, 2005.

Women's Spirituality Faculty

Alka Arora Alka Arora
Assistant Professor, Women's Spirituality
PhD, University of Washington,
BA, University of Southern California,
Asoka Bandarage Asoka Bandarage
Adjunct Distinguished Professor, Women's Spirituality
PhD, BA, Yale University,
BA, Bryn Mawr College,
Jennifer Berezan Jennifer Berezan
Adjunct Professor, Women's Spirituality
MA, Holy Names College,
BA, University of Calgary,
Carolyn Brandy Carolyn Brandy
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
BA, Holy Names College,
Susan Carter Susan Carter
Adjunct Professor, Women's Spirituality & Transformative Inquiry
PhD, MA, California Institute of Integral Studies,
BA, Lewis and Clark College,
Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum
Professor Emeritus, Women's Spirituality
PhD, MA, BA, University of California, Berkeley,
Carol P. Christ Carol P. Christ
Adjunct Professor, Women's Spirituality
Director,
PhD, MA, Yale University,
Lisa Christie Lisa Christie
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,
MBA, Santa Clara University; BA, Coleman College,
Cheryl Dawson Cheryl Dawson
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
MDiv, Graduate Theological Union,
MA, New College of California; BA, California State University, Hayward,
Vivian Dzyak Vivian Dzyak
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, MA, California Institute of Integral Studies,
BA, California State University, Hayward,
Riane Eisler Riane Eisler
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Women's Spirituality Program
Philosophy and Religion Department, School of Consciousness and Transformation
JD, University of California, Los Angeles,
May Elawar May Elawar
Assistant Professor , Transformative Studies
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,
MA, American University, Washington DC,
Heide Goettner-Abendroth Heide Goettner-Abendroth
Adjunct Distinguished Professor, Women's Spirituality
PhD, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitat of Munich,
Susan Griffin
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
MA, BA, San Francisco State University,
Miri Hunter Haruach Miri Hunter Haruach
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,
MA, University of New Mexico; BFA, University of Tampa,
Mara Lynn Keller Mara Lynn Keller
Professor, Women's Spirituality Program
PhD, MPhil, Yale University,
MA, Purdue University; BA, Gettysburg College,
Anne Key Anne Key
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,
MA, BA, Stephen F. Austin State University,
Rabbi Jane Rachel Litman Rabbi Jane Rachel Litman
Adjunct Instructor, Women's Spirituality
MAHL, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College,
MA, Hebrew Union College; BA, University of California, Berkeley,
Mary Mackey Mary Mackey
Adjunct Professor, Women's Spirituality
Phd, University of Michigan,
BA, Harvard University,
Reanae McNeal Reanae McNeal
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
MA, Texas Woman’s University,
BA, Western Illinois University,
Mytrae Meliana Mytrae Meliana
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
MA, California Institute of Integral Studies,
MA, MM, Ball State University,
Arisika Razak Arisika Razak
Professor Emeritus, Women's Spirituality
MPH, University of California, Berkeley,
Sara Salazar Sara Salazar
Lecturer,
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,
Brenda Salgado Brenda Salgado
MS, University of California, Davis,
BA, San Francisco State University,
Charlene Spretnak Charlene Spretnak
Professor Emeritus, Women's Spirituality
Starhawk Starhawk
Adjunct Professor, Women's Spirituality
MA, Antioch West,
BA, UCLA,
Elizabeth Ursic Elizabeth Ursic
Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, Arizona State University; MDiv, Yale University,
BA/MA, BA/BS, University of Pennsylvania,
Karen Nelson Villanueva Karen Nelson Villanueva
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,
MA, George Washington University; MA, Holy Names University,
Afia Walking Tree Afia Walking Tree
Adjunct Lecturer, Women's Spirituality
M.Ed, Bank Street College of Education,
Sara Webb Sara Webb
Adjunct Professor, Women's Spirituality
BA, University of California, Berkeley,
Annette Williams Annette Williams
Program Chair and Assistant Professor, Women's Spirituality
PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies,

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