Faculty

Mrs. Aminta Arrington

Assistant Professor of Intercultural Studies

M.A., Johns Hopkins University

B.A., Wheaton College

aarington@jbu.edu

Mrs. Aminta Arrington spent eight years serving through an organization that places Christian teachers at Chinese universities, most recently at Renmin University of China in Beijing. Prior to the four years she spent in the Chinese capital, she spent an additional four years in the agricultural hinterlands of eastern China's Shandong province teaching at Taishan Medical University. She chronicled those experiences in the edited book Saving Grandmother's Face and Other Tales from Christian Teachers in China, and the memoir Home Is a Roof Over a Pig: An American Family's Journey in China.

Mrs. Arrington wrote her dissertation on the Lisu--a people dispersed throughout southwest China, eastern Myanmar (Burma), and northern Thailand. The Lisu converted to Christianity approximately one hundred years ago after evangelization by the China Inland Mission and other mission organizations. She spent several months living with the Lisu in woven bamboo huts on steep mountain inclines participating in the rhythm of village life: planting corn, feeding animals, eating food cooked over a fire, washing dishes, and five times a week, sitting on hard pews in church singing hymns in four-part harmony. Through the Lisu, she learned about a Christian faith that is focused on togetherness within a community of fellow believers, a faith most authentically expressed through music and song, a faith directed outward toward God and neighbors.

Mrs. Arrington has traversed both major and minor waterways throughout Southeast Asia: the Mekong River from northern Thailand, through Laos, Cambodia, and the Mekong Delta in Vietnam; the Irrawaddy river from Mandalay to Bagan in Myanmar (Burma); and, trekked through northern Thailand on foot and via bamboo raft. She has explored the ruins of ancient civilizations at Siem Reap, Cambodia; Ayutthaya and Sukhotai in Thailand; and, Hue, Vietnam. She has traveled across the length of Java (east to west) and Vietnam (south to north) by rail. She spent a year studying Japanese in Tokyo. She has participated in homestays with the Karen of northern Thailand and the Bidayuh of Malaysian Borneo. She has been attacked by monkeys in Bali and eaten mango sticky rice in Thailand too many times to count. But her greatest joys are found in worshipping God with Christians from the Global South, and in teaching her students to better understand and appreciate the depth, diversity, and beauty of the pante ta ethne--the world's peoples and cultures.