Miguel A. De La Torre

Miguel A. De La Torre

Professor of Social Ethics and Latinx Studies

Contact Information

Phone: (303) 765-3133

Fax: (303) 777-0164

Email: mdelatorre@iliff.edu

Education

B.A., Florida International University
M.P.A., American University
M.Div., Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
M.A., Temple University
Ph.D., Temple University

Bio

Born in Cuba months before the Castro Revolution, Miguel De La Torre and his family came to the United States as refugees when he was six months old. At the age of nineteen, he began a real estate company in Miami, Florida and became active in local politics. At one point a candidate for the Florida House of Representatives. The company was a financial success, however, convicted by the biblical passage concerning the “Rich Young Ruler (Luke 18),” De La Torre dissolved his thirteen-year-old firm and attended Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in order to obtain a Masters in Divinity. During his seminary training he served as pastor to a rural congregation. However, lacking opportunities within the church structure due to ethnic discrimination, De La Torre continued his theological training and obtained a doctoral. The focus of his academic pursuit was social ethics within contemporary U.S. thought, specifically how religion affects race, class, and gender oppression. He specialized in applying a social scientific approach to Latino/a religiosity within this country, Liberation theologies in the Caribbean and Latin America, and postmodern/postcolonial social theory.

De La Torre is one of the most (if not the most) prolific contemporary Latinx religion scholars. Since obtaining his doctoral in 1999, Dr. Miguel De La Torre has authored several hundred articles and over thirty-two books, including the national award-winning Reading the Bible from the Margins, (Orbis, 2002); Santería: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2004); Doing Christian Ethics from the Margins, (Orbis, 2004); and the two-volume Encyclopedia on Hispanic American Religious Cultures (ABC-CLIO, 2009). He presently serves as Professor of Social Ethics and Latinx Studies at Iliff School of Theology in Denver. Within the academy he is a past-director to the American Academy of Religion, 2012 and served as co-chair of its Ethics Section; President of the Society of Christian Ethics, and the Executive Officer (and cofounder) of the Society of Race, Ethnicity and Religion. Additionally, he is the founding editor of the “Journal of Race, Ethnicity, and Religion.” A scholar-activist, Dr. De La Torre has written numerous articles in popular media, https://ourlucha.wordpress.com/ and has served on several civic organizations.

De La Torre received a Fulbright Specialists Scholarship allowing him to teach at Gadjah Mada University in Indonesia during the summer of 2012. He has also taught classes at Johannesburg University in South Africa (Fall 2014) and Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany (Fall 2015). He recently received two Louisville Institute Grants that will allow him to do research in Cuba for two upcoming books on José Martí.

View Curriculum Vitae

News & Awards

The Bakersfield Californian – November 11, 2016
Community Voices: After the election, what does our future look like?
ABC News – June 12, 2013
NC Protests Split on Bible’s Message to Help Poor, De La Torre Interviewed
Miguel De La Torre, professor of social ethics is interview for an article by Chris Kardish, Associated Press.

Over the last two months, hundreds of protesters have walked out of North Carolina’s capitol in handcuffs to show their opposition to policies by the GOP-controlled Legislature.

While a broader coalition of supporters is building around the “Moral Mondays” started by the state chapter of the NAACP, the inspiration behind the protests is a throwback to the biblical message of civil rights leaders fighting segregation in the Jim Crow era.

Al Jazeera – March 15, 2013
Pope Francis: A symbol of change? Miguel De La Torre Interview, Al Jazeera
Inside Story Americans interview. We examine the political, cultural and religious impact of the Latin American pope’s ordination on the region.

Joining Inside Story Americas, with presenter Shihab Rattansi, are guests: Ivan Petrella, an Argentine social theorist; Miguel de la Torre, a religion professor at the Iliff School of Theology; and Sister Mary Ellen Lacy one of the “Nuns on the Bus” who tr

Lehigh Valley Live.com – February 07, 2012
Dead chicken found in Tewksbury Township believed to be part of Santeria ritual
Miguel De La Torre speaks about Santeria rituals in connection with the finding of a dead chicken in a box with candles and fruit. The Santeria religion blends West African roots with several different beliefs, including those of medieval Roman Catholicism.

Real Clear Religion – October 31, 2011
Barack Obama Is Not the Devil, Really
Emily Manual, Religion Dispatches, spoke recently with Miguel De La Torre about his book, The Quest For the Historical Satan, he co-authored with Albert Hernandez, and about the disastrous legacy the idea of Satan has bequeathed to Christianity, the dark side of God, and about the persistence of that Obama-as-Antichrist campaign.

Viva Colorado – June 30, 2011
Latino theologian proposes new dialogue about sexual orientation and identity
Dr. Miguel de la Torre, professor of social ethics and Latino/a studies at Iliff School of Theology, is the co-author of A La Familia: A Conversation About Our Families, the Bible, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, a 126-page book addressing the challenges Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people often face in Latino/a families and churches.

UMNS United Methodist News Service Report – June 14, 2011
Lewd tweets offer lessons on sexual ethics
An elected leader’s adultery for that reason should be a matter of national concern, said the Rev. Miguel A. De La Torre, a professor of social ethics at United Methodist-related Iliff School of Theology. De La Torre and others who study these issues used the term “adultery” when discussing Weiner’s (Rep. Anthony D. Weiner, D-N.Y.) behavior. They said adultery is not defined strictly as a physical act.

The Orlando Sentinel – May 21, 2011
The world will end today – or it won’t
De La Torre is quoted in an article by Jeff Kunerth. “We can laugh at it or dismiss it or believe it, but there is a danger to this,” said Miguel De La Torre, professor of social ethics at the Iliff School of Theology in Denver. “How many people have disposed of all their possessions, quit their jobs they can’t afford to quit or sent in their money to spend on more billboards to spread the message? It should not be taken lightly.”

General Board of Church & Society of the United Methodist Church – May 20, 2011
On Judgment Day being May 21
Prof. Miguel De La Torre was quoted in response to the national proclamation that May 21, 2011 was Judgment Day.

CBS Denver – 4 – May 18, 2011
De La Torre Interviewed About Judgment Day Billboards
De La Torre is interviewed (evening broadcast) about the Judgment Day May 21 predictions by Family Radio’s Harold Camping, originally from Boulder.

EthicDaily.com – March 21, 2011
Methodist Foundation Funds Immigration Documentary
Miguel De La Torre is interviewed in a documentary on immigration funded by the United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas.

San Diego Red – February 25, 2011
Escritor propone una nueva ética hispana basada en la acción comunitaria
Another article on Professor De La Torre’s work – but in Spanish

Chicago Breaking News-Tribune – July 23, 2010
Cardinal George arrives in Cuba
By Manya Brachear. De La Torre said Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George’s 24-hour pastoral visit could carry long-term significance.

Peter Lavelle’s CrossTalk – July 16, 2010
Cross-Talk on Cuba: Cuba Libre
English-language international television interview based in Moscow, Russia. On this edition of Peter Lavelle’s CrossTalk, guests, including Miguel De La Torre, are asked, since Obama says US policy toward Cuba has “failed”, what’s to be done to correct this failure.

Dallas Baptist Standard – June 17, 2010
Baptists view growing Hispanic population as opportunity
This concerns Cuban-born Miguel De La Torre, an outspoken advocate for comprehensive immigration reform.

The Baptist Standard – April 08, 2010
Reading the Bible through the eyes of poverty yields different interpretations (with Video)
Written by Vicki Brown, Word and Way. Features Video Interview – Distribution of Wealth, Kaitlin Chapman, Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission Conference, McAllen, TX.

Holland Sentinel – October 23, 2009
Church briefs: Author to address immigration policy and Christian ethics

Additional Links

The following links are to sites unrelated and are not maintained by The Iliff School of Theology.

Freedom of expression is supported by The Iliff School of Theology; as such, the ideas and opinions expressed in these links may not necessarily reflect the policies or perspectives of The Iliff School of Theology, but those of individuals.

  • Personal blog: Our Lucha
  • Personal website
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Wikipedia Article
  • ProfNet expert of the week
  • Judgement Day? or Not?
    p(. CBSNews – Miguel De La Torre fielded questions from media across the country as predictions of Judgement Day neared.
  • Dead chicken believed to be part of Santeria ritual
  • The Denver Post Denver Catholics Celebrate the Naming of the New Pope, by Electa Draper. Miguel De La Torre quoted.
  • Catholic News Service Whoever church chooses as pope, his voice matters, say non-Catholics, By Dennis Sadowski Catholic News Service. Miguel De La Torre quoted.
  • Al Jazeera Pope Francis: A symbol of change?Joining Inside Story Americas, with presenter Shihab Rattansi, are guests: Ivan Petrella, an Argentine social theorist; Miguel de la Torre, a religion professor at the Iliff School of Theology; and Sister Mary Ellen Lacy one of the “Nuns on the Bus” who traveled across the US during the presidential election campaign to promote social justice and protest against cuts in programmes for the poor.