Curran Center News

New Scholar Essay Prize for Catholic Studies

Dr. Raúl E. Zegarra

The winner of the fourth annual New Scholar Essay Prize for Catholic Studies in the Americas is Dr. Raúl E. Zegarra, for his essay “The Preferential Option of the Poor: Liberation Theology, Pentecostalism, and the New Forms of Sacralization” which appeared in the European Journal of Sociology/Archives Européennes de Sociologie in 2023. Dr. Zegarra's essay revisits the alleged demise of liberation theology in Latin America, with a particular focus on the situation in Peru. Amidst social and ecclesial changes in the wake of Vatican II (1962-65), Zegarra discerns the ways civil-society organizations have become new sacred spaces. Zegarra serves as a Teaching Fellow at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Click here to find a full-text version of the essay.