Associate Editor (1970-2014)

Elizabeth Palmberg is the daughter of one science fiction fan and one Presbyterian elder who is federally licensed to dispense medicinal marijuana (although she would like to point out that he, a glaucoma specialist, only prescribes it in the less than .1% of cases in which it works better than eyedrops). She grew up in St. Louis, MO and Miami, FL, with an older and younger sister, both of whom have waist-length hair.

Her long history of meddling with other people's writing began in her first weeks of college; she escalated from editing the papers of hapless friends to editing (as a tutor) the papers of people she didn't even know. Eventually, she went on to doctoral work in English at Cornell University, where the unsuspecting administration allowed her to teach a first-year writing seminar on "Scary Stories of the Nineteenth Century." While at Cornell, she dwelt in Flapdragon House, whose denizens enticed her into the shadowy underworld that is Lindy Hop. After seven years of "gradual school," she gained three letters to add to her name, and went off to teach for a year each at Kenyon College and Scripps College.

Although Victorian British literature is interesting, it turns out that social justice (particularly relating to economic globalization) is even more interesting. Ways in which people imagine economics kept winding their way into all her courses, including "Love Stories of the Nineteenth Century" and "The Clichés From Space: Gender and Science Fiction." In 2002, the Lord smote her upside of the head and instructed her to go seek a career working for a progressive Christian nonprofit.

She's found a home at Sojourners, first as an intern ("editorial assistant"), and now as an assistant editor. She's enthusiastic about (in descending order) Jesus, Sojourners' switch to monthly publication, and bittersweet chocolate.

Elizabeth Palmberg died peacefully in her sleep at her home in Washington, D.C., on the morning of June 23, 2014. Per her wishes, memorial donations in her name may be made to any of the following: Christ House (1717 Columbia Rd NW, Washington, DC 20009); St. Stephen and the Incarnation Episcopal Church (1525 Newton Street NW, Washington, DC 20010); Sojourners Internship Program (PO Box 70730, Washington, DC 20024-0730) .

Posts By This Author

A Human-Made Disaster

by Elizabeth Palmberg 07-01-2008

The dramatic rise in world food prices has pushed millions into poverty. Here's a look at 10 factors--from agrofuel production to rising meat and dairy consumption--that have contributed to this preventable crisis.

Khartoum Continues to Undermine Peace Efforts

by Elizabeth Palmberg 06-20-2008

In the past week, the blood-stained regime ruling Sudan has once again engaged in "open and transparent effort to overthrow a neighboring government," Chad, where for the past week Sudanese-backed rebels have been attacking towns. The attacks put at risk half a million [...]

Drive-by Diplomacy Doesn't Cut It in Darfur

by Elizabeth Palmberg 05-27-2008

We know that the government of Sudan responds to civil war by targeting innocent civilians-a strategy based on its weakness as well as its evil. This is the strategy the Khartoum regime used in southern Sudan until the international community pressured it into a 2005 peace accord. It's what the regime is [...]

In Praise of the Dishonest Manager

by Elizabeth Palmberg 05-06-2008

One of Jesus' most in-your-face stories, and a personal favorite of mine, is the Parable of the Dishonest Manager in Luke 16. I would loosely paraphrase its central insight as follows: "If you have the sense God gave a dog, you will realize that you can't hold onto money very long anyway, but you can keep the friends you make by giving it to those in need. You do the math." The passage [...]

A Time for Jubilee

by Elizabeth Palmberg 04-04-2008

The subprime mortgage crisis in the U.S. has raised just outrage at the behavior of predatory lenders. It's wrong to push a mortgage which the lender knows the borrower won't be able to pay back, driving homeowners into foreclosure and bankruptcy.

But when poor nations have unpayable debt-often the result of Cold War favors to corrupt dictators-they can't declare bankruptcy. They have to just keep paying, even if all they can pay is the interest, never touching the principal. Even if [...]

Zimbabwe's Elections and beyond: Stay Tuned

by Elizabeth Palmberg 03-28-2008

Will Zimbabwe's parliamentary and presidential elections, coming up Saturday, be a complete sham, like their predecessors? The government of Zimbabwe, under Robert Mugabe, has left Zimbabwe's economy in ruins and permitted the HIV/AIDS crisis rise to catastrophic levels, prompting protests among [...]

Good News/Bad News for Uganda

by Elizabeth Palmberg 02-29-2008

First, the very good news: a deal appears to be in sight to demobilize the murderous LRA of Uganda, which has abducted tens of thousands of children and been responsible for killings and mutilations. There are

Murder, Inc.

by Elizabeth Palmberg 02-18-2008

The Bush administration wants Congress to sign off on an administration-negotiated trade agreement with Colombia, alleging that to do otherwise is, as one analyst put it, to "turn our back on our friends." But with friends like this, Colombia really doesn't need enemies. Consider:

Friends don't let friends murder labor unionists. More than

Shaming China's Genocide Games

by Elizabeth Palmberg 02-13-2008

Running interference for genocide is not an Olympic sport. And now Nobel laureates such as Shirin Ebadi and Archbishop Desmond Tutu are joining with former Beijing 2008 Olympic Games artistic advisor Stephen [...]

Aiming at Headlines

by Elizabeth Palmberg 02-01-2008
Bush administration amnesia spells disaster for Darfur.

Part Time Opposition to Genocide

by Elizabeth Palmberg 01-09-2008

The newest issue of Sojourners, hitting mailboxes and newsstands soon, has a photo of Andrew Natsios, President Bush's special envoy for Sudan at press time. Natsios stepped down [...]

Do the Math

by Elizabeth Palmberg 01-01-2008
Don't buy the corporate agrofuel greenwash.

A Genocide of Convenience

by Elizabeth Palmberg 12-14-2007

As I do more reading about Darfur, I've had to re-examine some of my assumptions about genocide. I'd tended to think about genocides on the model of the Holocaust, which involved a massive logistical undertaking by a ruthlessly evil state whose armies were strong enough to conquer multiple other nations.

The genocide in Darfur is intentionally caused by a ruthlessly evil state, but that's where the similarities end. Khartoum's strategies in Darfur - as in southern Sudan before the [...]

Darfur: Don't Take No for an Answer

by Elizabeth Palmberg 11-29-2007

The genocidal regime in Khartoum is, unsurprisingly, trying to undermine and block the joint U.N./African Union peacekeeping team that has been authorized to offer desperately needed protection to civilians in Darfur. As a

Darfur: We Know What Works

by Elizabeth Palmberg 11-19-2007

Here's the good news about Darfur: we know it is doable to force the regime in Khartoum to back away from its genocidal divide-and-conquer strategies. We know this because the U.S. helped do it once already: it led international pressure that forced Khartoum to a peace accord and power-sharing agreement with southern Sudan in 2005. If we want to preserve the [...]

Iran's Lame Duck, Our Lame Political Script

by Elizabeth Palmberg 10-03-2007

With all the fuss around Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's recent visit to New York, you'd think that he had political power, command of the military, or at least strong popular support in his homeland. Actually, he has none of the above, as Stephen Zunes argues in a recent Foreign Policy in Focus article:

Planting Justice for Farmers

by Elizabeth Palmberg 07-01-2007
How to stop fueling the agribusiness model.

Decoding the Lingo

by Elizabeth Palmberg 05-01-2007
Trade technocrats try to hide behind a veil of boring, but you can get beyond the jargon.

There Are None So Blind...

by Elizabeth Palmberg 05-01-2007
Three factors that are invisible to market fundamentalists.

Taking Action

by Elizabeth Palmberg 05-01-2007

• Write your members of Congress to demand that they not renew the president's "fast track" authority on trade agreements, which ties Congress's hands by allowing it only to approv