Elaine Pagels, Religion, Princeton University
Harrington Spear Paine Professor of Religion at Princeton University, Elaine Pagels is well known for her work in the field of religious studies and theology. She first gained recognition for her research disproving the myth of the early Christian Church as a unified movement—in The Gnostic Gospels, she provides analysis of 52 early Christian manuscripts that show the pluralistic nature of the early church and the role of women in the developing Christian movement. The Gnostic Gospels won both the National Book Critic’s Circle Award and the National Book Award and was chosen by the Modern Library as one of the 100 best books of the 20th Century. Professor Pagels is also the author of The Origin of Satan; Reading Judas; and Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas, among others. She was awarded the Rockefeller, Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellowships in three consecutive years.