Jeremy Menchik honors Alfred Stepan

November 1st, 2017 in Professor News

Alfred-Stepan-Eileen-Barroso-Columbia-UniversityAlfred C. Stepan was a comparative political scientist and Wallace S. Sayre Professor of Government at Columbia University, where he was also director of the Center for the Study of Democracy, Toleration and Religion. After his recent passing, CURA Faculty Associate Jeremy Menchik contributed a piece on his legacy for the Social Science Research Council. Please read it here.

BU Faculty showcased at the American Academy of Religion Annual Meeting

October 26th, 2017 in Professor News

 

Many BU professors and graduate students are speaking at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion, November 18-21. Check out the full schedule for the Boston based event.

A sample of BU involvement

Harvard Religious Literacy Project and American Academy of Religion Theme: FBI and Religion Scholars: Reflecting on the Past 25 Years
Friday, 1:00 PM–4:00 PM
Offsite-Harvard Divinity School, 45 Francis Ave, Sperry Room, Andover Hall 116

Philip Heymann, Harvard University, Presiding In the years following the 1993 confrontation between the FBI and a religious community called the Branch Davidians, religion scholars have occasionally offered the FBI advice regarding dissident religious groups who are less commonly well-understood and who come into conflict with law enforcement. The American Academy of Religion has served as an interlocutor for the Critical Incident Response Group and has also established a relationship with the FBI Academy through its National Academy. The mutual hope of religion scholars and the FBI officials with whom they have interacted has been that consultation might lead to better outcomes than occurred with the Branch Davidians. This panel will reflect on the interaction between religion scholars and law enforcement officials over the past 25 years and what may be learned from that experience to inform interaction going forward. Welcoming remarks will be provided by Diane L. Moore, Director of the Religious Literacy Project, Harvard Divinity School. After the panelists speak, there will be time for the panel to respond to questions from the audience. Panelists: Eileen Barker, London School of Economics and Political Science Michael Barkun, Syracuse University David T. Resch, Federal Bureau of Investigation Robin Montgomery, Brookfield, CT Steven Weitzman, University of Pennsylvania Eugene V. Gallagher, Connecticut College Gregory B. Saathoff, University of Virginia
Responding: Nancy Ammerman, Boston University

 

Status of LGBTIQ Persons, People with Disabilities, Racial and Ethnic Minorities, and Women in the Profession Committees Joint Meeting
Friday, 7:00 PM–9:00 PM
Hynes Convention Center-203
Kecia Ali, Boston University, Presiding

 

Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies Theme: You, Darkness From Which I Come: A Performance and Discussion of a Contemporary Musical Setting of New Translations of Rilke’s Poems
Friday, 7:30 PM–9:00 PM
Offsite-Old South Church, 645 Boylston Street

Mary Lyon Hall Delvyn Case, Wheaton College, and Mark S. Burrows, Protestant University of Applied Sciences, Presiding The musical portion will be performed by Margot Rood, soprano, and Brady Millican on the piano. This event is free and open to the public and will be followed by refreshments.
Responding: Andrew Shenton, Boston University

 

Religion in Europe Unit Theme: Under the Surface of Current Debates: Islam Negotiating with European Culture
Saturday, 9:00 AM–11:30 AM
Sheraton Boston-The Fens (Fifth Level)

Elissa Cutter, Loyola Marymount University, Presiding Carol Ferrara, Boston University The Making of a Common Enemy: Interreligious Consensus Amidst Secular Pluralism in France Stephanie Frank, Columbia College, Chicago The Niqab Ban in France: Unveiling the Durkheimian Model of Religion at Work David Bos, University of Amsterdam Homosexuality and Islam in Dutch Public Discourse Since the 1960s Spencer Dew, Centenary College of Louisiana The Purloined Church: Ahmadiyya Negotiations of Danish Conceptions of Religion Business Meeting: Elissa Cutter, Loyola Marymount University, and Kocku von Stuckrad, University of Groningen, Presiding

 

Pre-Posted Papers Session S C Religions, Medicines, and Healing Unit Theme: State of the Field: Past, Present, and Future of the Studies of Religions, Medicines, and Healing
Saturday, 9:00 AM–11:30 AM
Sheraton Boston-Liberty C (Second Level)

Steven Barrie-Anthony, University of Southern California, Presiding Panelists: Vasudha Narayanan, University of Florida C. Pierce Salguero, Abington College Ofelia Villero, Graduate Theological Union Responding: Linda L. Barnes, Boston University School of Medicine Business Meeting: Emily Wu, Dominican University, California, Presiding A18-129 – Pre-Posted Papers Session S C Religions, Medicines, and Healing Unit Theme: State of the Field: Past, Present, and Future of the Studies of Religions, Medicines, and Healing Saturday, 9:00 AM–11:30 AM Sheraton Boston-Liberty C (Second Level) Steven Barrie-Anthony, University of Southern California, Presiding Panelists: Vasudha Narayanan, University of Florida C. Pierce Salguero, Abington College Ofelia Villero, Graduate Theological Union Responding: Linda L. Barnes, Boston University School of Medicine Business Meeting: Emily Wu, Dominican University, California

 

Transnational Religious Expression: Between Asia and – Pre-Posted Papers Session S C R North America Seminar Theme: Theory and Method in the Study of Transnational Religious Expression
Saturday, 9:00 AM–11:30 AM
Sheraton Boston-Beacon F (Third Level)

Lucas Carmichael, University of Chicago, Presiding Lawrence Whitney, Boston University Protestantization and Confucianism: The Case of Boston Confucianism 2.0 Anandi Salinas, Emory University Lived Transnational Religion: Reflections on an Ethnography of *DXΕư\D9DLΙΧDYD Practices in the Southeastern US

 

#chineserels Buddhism Unit and Chinese Religions Unit Theme: Reshaping Family Life in Modern Chinese Buddhism
Saturday, 1:00 PM–3:30 PM
Marriott Copley Place-Exeter (Third Level)

Alison Jones, Harvard University, Presiding Jessica Zu, Princeton University Buddhisizing the Secular: Reframing the Family Ideals on Yogācāra Terms in Republican China Paul Katz, Academia Sinica Chen Hailiang’s Vision of Buddhist Family Life: A Pilot Study Natasha Heller, University of Virginia Buddhist Parenting for Modern Families: A Case Study Neky Tak-Ching Cheung, University of Macau Ritual and the Reformulation of Family Values: A Case Study of Lay Buddhist Menopausal Rituals in China Responding: Robert Weller, Boston University

 

Arts, Literature, and Religion Unit Theme: Museums and the Public Understanding of Religion: Sacred Art, History, and Science on Display
Saturday, 4:00 PM–6:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-The Fens (Fifth Level)

Brent Plate, Hamilton College, Presiding There are over 850 million visits every year to museums in the United States, much more than attendance at sporting events and amusement parks combined. Museums are go-to spaces for educational field trips, must-see destinations for tourists, for hands-on scientific exploration, and flint stones of socio-political controversy. And they are filled with religious objects. Presenters in this roundtable have worked with national institutions of US history, major museums of fine art, and have extensively studied the commitments of museum staff to shape opinion. Each panelist will reflect on their own experiences at the intersection of religion and museums, commenting on how museums engage, promote, and influence the public understanding of religion in the United States. The implications of the relations move beyond religious traditions and museum collections and connect with international legal issues, cultural appropriation, secularization, corporate sponsorships, economic reform, histories of art, scientific methods, and theological orthodoxy. Panelists: Lauren Turek, Trinity University Peter Manseau, National Museum of American History, Washington, DC William Trollinger, University of Dayton Susan Trollinger, University of Dayton Laura Weinstein, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Eric Lewis Williams, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture Responding: Stephen Prothero, Boston University

 

Black Theology Unit Theme: Michelle Alexander and Walter Fluker: The MysticalProphetic in Black—A Special Look at Mass Incarceration and the Black Lives Matter Movement
Saturday, 4:00 PM–6:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Back Bay B (Second Level)

Walter Earl Fluker, Boston University, Presiding Featuring Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness (2010) and Walter Fluker, editor of the Howard Thurman Papers Project, this panel will discuss ways that black theology contributes to prophetic advocacy and movement building and to a political, moral and spiritual revolution. Papers will suggest resources black theological interpreters may garner from the Black Lives Matter Movement and the tradition of black mysticism in Howard Thurman, James Baldwin and others. The Howard Thurman Center for Common Ground at Boston University will host a reception following the session. All attendees of the session are invited. Larry Perry, University of Virginia A Blues Enthused Mysticism: Howard Thurman, Mysticism, and Tragedy Wendy Arce, University of San Francisco Freedom in an Age of Repression: The Role of Black Theology and Black-Produced Media in Forging Freedom Gregory Williams, Duke University Jewish Election and the Blackness of God: Reading Barth on the Election of the Community in the Context of Mass Incarceration and #BlackLivesMatter S.Kyle Johnson, Boston College “Trapped in a History Which They Do Not Understand”: Reading James Baldwin with Thomas Merton, toward a Theological-Spiritual Account of Mass Incarceration Responding: Michelle Alexander, Union Theological Seminary Business Meeting: Andrea C. White, Union Theological Seminary, and Adam Clark, Xavier University, Presiding.

 

#chineserels C Chinese Religions Unit Theme: Chinese Religions and Print Culture
Saturday, 4:00 PM–6:30 PM
Hynes Convention Center-205 (Second Level)

Noga Ganany, Columbia University Origin Narratives: Writing and Worship in Late Ming Print Culture Katherine Alexander, University of Colorado Late Qing Performances of Philanthropic Identity in Reprints of Pan Gong Baojuan Yair Lior, Boston University The Tang-Song Transition in Light of Communication Technologies Kaiqi Hua, University of British Columbia The Tangut Buddhist Canon in the Yuan Dynasty: Printing Alien Scriptures under Alien Rule Responding: Jiang Wu, University of Arizona Business Meeting: Megan Bryson, University of Tennessee, and Anna Sun, Kenyon College, Presiding

 

Religion and Politics Unit Theme: International Relations and Religious Studies: Pedagogy and Interdisciplinary Exchange
Saturday, 4:00 PM–6:00 PM
Sheraton Boston-Beacon E (Third Level)

Evan Berry, American University, Presiding Panelists: David Buckley, University of Louisville Jeremy Menchik, Boston University James Miller, Queen’s University, Kingston Anna Bigelow, North Carolina State University Qamar-ul Huda, Georgetown University Nukhet Sandal, University of Ohio

 

Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit and Sociology of R Religions Unit Theme: Lived Religion and the Public Sphere: Practices and Experiences among Latinxs and Latin Americans
Saturday, 4:00 PM–6:30 PM
Hynes Convention Center-111 (Plaza Level)

Elaine Peña, George Washington University, Presiding Gustavo Morello, Boston College The Poor, the Pope, and the Religious Legitimation in the Public Sphere Néstor Da Costa, Catholic University of Uruguay “Non-affiliated” and Believers in the Uruguayan Public Sphere: Definitions, Tensions, and Reconfigurations of the “Public” Miren Iziar Basterretxea Moreno, University of Deusto Latin-American Catholics in Bilbao: What Changes and What Remains Jonathan Calvillo, Boston University Saints in the Barrio: Public Religion and Social Belonging among Mexican Immigrants in Santa Ana, CA Responding: Alyssa Maldonado-Estrada, Princeton University

 

Cultural History of the Study of Religion Unit and Science, Technology, and Religion Unit Theme: Religious Histories of Technology in the Americas
Sunday, 9:00 AM–11:30 AM
Sheraton Boston-Public Garden (Fifth Level)

Anthony Petro, Boston University, Presiding John Modern, Franklin and Marshall College On Technomasochism David Walker, University of California, Santa Barbara Railroading Secularism Kati Curts, University of the South Secular Sublime, Remixed Religion: Categorical Mash-Up in Christian Marclay’s The Clock Lucia Hulsether, Yale University Bound to the Company: Technologies of Capitalist Humanitarianism Angela Tarango, Trinity University The “New Buffalo”: Indian Gaming and Cultural Identity among the Oklahoma Nations Cara Rock-Singer, Columbia University Relational Technologies: Performing Queer Ritual Art Lisle Dalton, Hartwick College Railroad Catechisms

 

Women’s Mentoring Lunch 
Sunday, 11:45 AM–12:45 PM
Hynes Convention Center-302 (Third Level)

Andrea C. White, Union Theological Seminary, and Melissa M. Wilcox, University of California, Riverside, Presiding Women who are graduate students and new scholars are invited to a luncheon with over thirty womanist, feminist, and LGTIQ mid career and senior scholars. Women will have the opportunity to mentor and be mentored in a context where every question is valued. The lunch costs $13 per person; sorry, no refunds. Registration is limited to 100. Mentors: Kecia Ali, Boston University Rebecca Alpert, Temple University Ellen T. Armour, Vanderbilt University Loriliai Biernacki, University of Colorado Monica A. Coleman, Claremont School of Theology Melanie L. Harris, Texas Christian University Mary E. Hunt, Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual, Silver Spring, MD Jane Naomi Iwamura, University of the West Jung Ha Kim, Georgia State University Valerie Miles-Tribble, American Baptist Seminary of the West Elaine Padilla, University of La Verne Michelene Pesantubbee, University of Iowa Michele Saracino, Manhattan College Angella Son, Drew University Nargis Virani, Graduate Theological Union

 

International Society for Chinese Philosophy Theme: New Perspective on Confucianism
Sunday, 1:00 PM–3:30 PM
Marriott Copley Place-Hyannis (Fourth Level)

Chenyang Li, Nanyang Technological University, Presiding Bruce Brooks, University of Massachusetts The Personal and the Governmental in Mencius Chenyang Li, Nanyang Technological University Confucian Xiao as Filial Care Jesse Ciccotti, Hong Kong Baptist University A Ruler’s Religiosity: Comparing Marcus Aurelius and Mengzi on the Spiritual Side of Political Life Bin Song, Boston University Confucianism, Gapponshugi and the Spirit of Japanese Capitalism Responding: Xiaojiao Cu, Beijing University Wenzhi Zhang, Shandong University Andrew Fuyarchuk, Yorkville University Anna Sun, Kenyon College

 

Anthropology of Religion Unit Theme: Pregnant in the Field
Sunday, 5:00 PM–6:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Public Garden (Fifth Level)

Michal Raucher, University of Cincinnati, Presiding Panelists: Nancy Ammerman, Boston University Sarah Riccardi-Swartz, New York University Cara Rock-Singer, Columbia University Emily Sigalow, Duke University Responding: Juliane Hammer, University of North Carolina

 

A Practical Theology Unit Theme: Taking On Practical Theology: A Book Panel Based on Courtney Goto’s Challenge to the Field
Sunday, 5:00 PM–6:30 PM
Hynes Convention Center-208 (Second Level)

Tone Stangeland Kaufman, MF Norwegian School of Theology, Presiding Panelists: Mary Elizabeth Moore, Boston University Bonnie Miller-McLemore, Vanderbilt University Esther Acolatse, University of Toronto Mark Cartledge, Regent University Responding: Courtney T. Goto, Boston University

 

Interreligious and Interfaith Studies Unit and Religion, Holocaust, and Genocide Unit Theme: Interreligious Solidarity and Collaboration
Monday, 9:00 AM–11:30 AM
Hilton Boston Back Bay-Maverick B (Second Level)

Kate Temoney, Montclair State University, Presiding Tazeen Ali, Boston University Islamophobia and Anti-Semitism in America: Comparing Intersectional and Single-Issue Models of Interfaith Alliances Jennifer Hancock, Dallas, TX Faith Forward: “Enlightened” Interfaith Solidarities in Contest with White Nationalist “Deceptions” in Dallas Larycia Hawkins, University of Virginia Embodied Solidarity in Theopolitical Space: Interreligious Solidarity from below Kristi Del Vecchio, Catholic Theological Union Interreligious Environmentalism: Pragmatic Projects and Moral Competencies That Address Climate Change James W. Perkinson, Ecumenical Theological Seminary Interreligious Collaboration in the Struggle to Protect Water at the Strait: Indigenous Spirits Schooling Christian Texts in an Age of Climate Apocalypse Business Meeting: Jennifer Howe Peace, Andover Newton Theological School, and Homayra Ziad, Institute for Islamic, Christian, and Jewish Studies, Presiding

 

Program Committee and Public Understanding of Religion Committee Theme: Religion on Television: Production, Positives and Perils/ Pitfalls
Monday, 1:00 PM–3:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Grand & Independence (Second Level)

Shreena Gandhi, Michigan State University, Presiding This panel is on the different approaches scholars of religion are taking in presenting religion and the study of religion to a wider audience on television. Reza Aslan (Prayer in America, The Secret Life of Muslims, and Believer), Amir Hussain (The Story of God with Morgan Freeman), Candida Moss (Bible Secrets Revealed, Greatest Mysteries, and Finding Jesus: Faith. Fact. Forgery), Vanessa Ochs (Religion and Ethics Newsweekly), and Stephen Prothero (God in America) are all experts in this area, and will answer questions about their experiences on being a part of these programs, as well as being invited guests on various news and talk shows. The goal of this panel is to generate a robust discussion, during which the panelists will respond to some preliminary questions, but will also take questions from each other and the audience. The moderator will ask them to consider: what were your hopes and expectations, what challenges did you face, and what lessons did you learn, in the process of producing these programs for a general, often non-academic, audience? Further, what was the reception, both popular and scholarly, of your program, and what changes would you make if you had the chance/moving forward? Do the theoretical discussions and expectations of the academic study of religion translate to popular representations of religion, or is that perhaps, a false binary? What other concerns regarding religious representation, scholarly responsibility or popular prejudices did you find you had to address when in the midst of program production? Through this discussion, we hope to give some insight into the complicated processes of presenting religion for a wider audience, but also think through the role of religious studies scholars during these times when religions are often demonized, exoticized, misappropriated, misrepresented and misunderstood in the media and popular culture.

Panelists: Reza Aslan, University of California, Riverside Amir Hussain, Loyola Marymount University Candida Moss, University of Birmingham Vanessa Ochs, University of Virginia Stephen Prothero, Boston University

 

Comparative Religious Ethics Unit Theme: Solidarity, Resistance, and Freedom in Comparative Perspective
Monday, 1:00 PM–3:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Liberty B (Second Level)

Jung Lee, Northeastern University, Presiding David Decosimo, Boston University In Defense of Big Comparison: Why the Arguments against Comparing Entire Religious Traditions Don’t Succeed Laura Alexander, University of Nebraska, Omaha (The Image of ) God in All of Us: Putting Sikh and Christian Humanitarian Responses to the Refugee Crisis in Conversation Won Chul Shin, Emory University Must Resist Totalitarian Sickness: Women’s Moral Protest under the Totalitarian Regime in South Korea, 1970-1979 Faraz Sheikh, College of William and Mary Conceptualizing Freedom of Religion in Early Islamic Thought: AlMuhasibi’s “Mind Your Own Subjectivity” Approach to Others

 

North American Religions Unit Theme: Making Difference: Religion and Disability in the United States
Monday, 1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Hynes Convention Center-102 (Plaza Level)

Julia Watts Belser, Georgetown University, Presiding Sarah Imhoff, Indiana University Disability Studies Needs Religion: Lessons from a Queer Crippled Jew Darla Schumm, Hollins University Misfitting as a Practice of Justice: Religion, Disability, and Community in the U.S. Andrew Walker-Cornetta, Princeton University Aware of Angels: Reflections on Studying Religion and Disability Anthony Petro, Boston University Bob Flanagan’s Crip Catholicism

 

#aarsor C Sociology of Religion Unit and Critical Research on Religion Theme: Religion, Rationality, and Rational Choice
Monday, 1:00 PM–3:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Fairfax B (Third Level)

Katja Rakow, Utrecht University, Presiding Mitsutoshi Horii, Shumei University Historicizing the Category of “Religion” in Sociological Theories: Max Weber and Emile Durkheim Jon R. Stone, California State University, Long Beach Prophetic Authority in New Religious Movements: Beyond Festinger, beyond Weber Andrew Lynn, University of Virginia, and Isabella Hall, University of Virginia Making Your Work Matter to God: The Cultural Production of New Spirits of Capitalism in Twentieth-Century American Evangelicalism Torkel Brekke, University of Oslo Applying Market Theory of Religion Outside the Modern West Responding: Adam Seligman, Boston University Business Meeting: Warren S. Goldstein, Center for Critical Research on Religion, Newton, MA, and Rebekka King, Middle Tennessee State University, Presiding

 

Augustine and Augustinianisms Unit and SBL History and Literature of Rabbinic Judaism Theme: Self-Control in Augustine and Rabbinic Literature
Monday, 4:00 PM–6:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Back Bay B (Second Level)

Jonathan Klawans, Boston University, Presiding Liza Anderson, Episcopal Divinity School The Im(permeable) Self in Augustine and Other Ancient Writers Jonathan Schofer, University of Texas Self-Control, Foucault’s Ethics, and Deuteronomy Rabbah 8:4 Orit Malka, Tel Aviv University Incompetent Witnesses and Self-Control in Tannaitic Literature Matthew Goldstone, New York University Humility and the Self: Parallel (Yet Competing) Orientations in the Work of Augustine and the Rabbis of Late Antiquity Responding: Virginia Burrus, Syracuse University

 

#islamaar Religion and Sexuality Unit and Study of Islam Unit Theme: Sexual Ethics in Medieval Islamic Thought
Monday, 4:00 PM–6:30 PM
Sheraton Boston-Constitution A (Second Level)

Carolyn Baugh, Gannon University, Presiding Aisha Geissinger, Carleton University “This Is Not in the Book of God!”— or Is It? A Queer Medieval Textual Moment and the Gendering of Textual Authority

Sara Omar, American University Shifting Orthodoxies: Representations of the Zaynab bint -DΗVK Affair Arafat Razzaque, Harvard University Curtain Ethics: Sex, Privacy, and the Idea of Concealing Sins in Medieval Islam Saadia Yacoob, Williams College Gendering Sexual Desire: Tamkīn and Female Sexual Agency Responding: Kecia Ali, Boston University

 

#islamaar Study of Islam Unit Theme: Exploring the Islamic and the Secular
Tuesday, 10:30 AM–12:00 PM
Sheraton Boston-Public Garden (Fifth Level)

Elliott Bazzano, Le Moyne College, Presiding Anna Piela, Leeds Trinity University Identity and Experiences of Women Who Choose to Wear the Niqab in the United Kingdom Shatha Almutawa, Willamette University Playing with Gender and Modernity: Tango in Secular Muslim Contexts David Decosimo, Boston University What Is an Islamic Value? Are There Any?

 

Dharma Academy of North America (DANAM) Theme: Charitable Actions and Dharma: Giving and Compassion
Friday, 9:00 AM–11:00 AM
Marriott Copley Place-Brandeis (Third Level)

Rita Sherma, Graduate Theological Union, Presiding Ithamar Theodor, University of Haifa Charitable Actions by the Ideal Person in the Hindu and Chinese Traditions Karma Lekshe Tsomo, University of San Diego Bridging Generosity and Economic Ethics: The Maya of Virtue and Responsibility Amod Lele, Boston University Disengaged Buddhism: South Asian Buddhist Rejection of Systemic Change Tanya Storch, University of the Pacific $KLΥVƘ at Every Moment: Traditional and Modern Understanding Peter Ryan, Lotus School of Liberal Arts The Egg, the Chick, the Hen: A Moment of Presence for Student and Teacher—$KLΥVƘ and Anti-Hierarchy Responding: Karen Enriquez, Loyola Marymount University

 

International Society for Science and Religion Theme: Attending to Symbiosis: Theology and the Connectedness of Nature
Friday, 10:30 AM–1:00 PM
Sheraton Boston-Republic A (Second Level)

Few recent developments in biology are as striking as our new appreciation of mutually beneficial symbiosis: the hair on a sloth is adapted for growing algae, which forms an important source of calories for its host in return; the earliest known fossils of life on Earth are of symbiotic communities; garden centres stock spores of fungus that extends the root system of trees, and is nourished with sugars in return. Mutualism — beneficial relationships between organisms of different — is no longer seen as a marginal curiosity; it is now known to be profoundly widespread. Evolution now seems to present the story of shifting patterns of benefit, not simply of competition. Some of its most momentous developments have involved the symbiotic engulfing of smaller organisms by larger ones (endosymbiosis), as with chloroplasts and mitochondria. There are important practical consequences. Aspects of human health depend on our relationship with the bacteria, or microbiome, of our gut. Something as fundamental to agriculture as soil is a shaped and preserved by symbiotic relationships. Beginning with a survey of state of contemporary scientific knowledge, this panel will address the relative lack of theological attention to these developments, and consider their significance for a theological understanding of nature, not least in the form of their consequences for systematic theology and theological ethics. Registration is not required. For more information, please see http:// issr.yolasite.com. Panelists: Daniel Castillo, Loyola University, Maryland Andrew Davison, University of Cambridge Adam Pryor, Bethany College Katherine Sonderegger, Virginia Theological Seminary Wesley J. Wildman, Boston University

 

Theology Without Walls Group Theme: Love and Desire, Human and Divine
Saturday, 9:30 AM–12:00 PM
Westin Copley Place-Great Republic (Seventh Level)

Jerry L. Martin, University of Colorado, Presiding Different traditions propose different analyses of desire, and hence of love. These differences are reflected in their understanding of the relation of the human to the divine, and of the divine to the human, and of the human to the human. Which understandings are most adequate to the human condition and the divine reality? What texts, stories, theories, practices, or examples are most illuminating in this regard? How do the religious texts and ideas interact with understandings gained from other sources, personal, psychological, literary, philosophical, scientific, etc.? Panelists: S. Mark Heim, Andover Newton Theological School Paul Knitter, Union Theological Seminary Richard Oxenberg, Endicott College Michelle Voss Roberts, Wake Forest University Wesley J. Wildman, Boston University

 

International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT) Theme: Al-Faruqi Memorial Lecture
Sunday, 7:00 PM–9:00 PM
Hynes Convention Center-207 (Second Level)
Panelists: Kecia Ali, Boston University

 

Theology Without Walls Group Theme: Rising Scholars and the Future of Transreligious Theology
Monday, 9:30 AM–11:00 AM
Westin Copley Place-Empire (Seventh Level)

Jerry L. Martin, University of Colorado, Presiding Join us for an open meeting to address the theological future. Graduate students and young faculty members grew up in a world more globalized and disaffiliated than that of their teachers. They may well have different presuppositions, concerns, aims, personal backgrounds, career patterns, and institutional or organizational settings. They may theologize in terms of a much wider range of spiritual data, and in service of a wider community than just the “faithful”. In this open-ended discussion, every participant will be given an opportunity to speak personally about the changing situation. Panelists: Christopher Denny, St. John’s University Rory McEntee, Drew Univsersity Kurt Anders Richardson, McMaster University Bin Song, Boston University

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Memorial for Peter Berger

October 4th, 2017 in Professor News

The memorial for our founding director Peter Berger has been scheduled.

Saturday, October 14
11:00am to 12:00pm
The Episcopal Church of Our Saviour, Longwood
25 Monmouth Street
Brookline, MA 02446

There will be a light reception following the service.

Politics In Nigeria: The State of a Permanent Unfavourable Investment Climate, By Nimi Wariboko

September 28th, 2017 in Professor News

Faculty Associate Professor Nimi Wariboko wrote an opinion piece on politics in Nigeria earlier this month in the Premium Times. Click here to read.

Lori, Schilde Discuss Migration Innovation Incubators

September 27th, 2017 in Professor News

Member of CURA Strategic Planning Committee Noora Lori discusses Migration Innovation Incubators.

Hefner keynotes in Malaysia

September 25th, 2017 in Professor News, research abroad

On September 29th, 2017, Professor Robert W. Hefner will present the keynote address at the opening of a conference on “A Civil Islam: Prospects and Challenges in the 21st Century,” in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  The event is sponsored by the Malaysia-based Islamic Renaissance Front, which was founded in 2009 and describes itself as “an intellectual movement and a think tank focusing on youth empowerment and promotion of intellectual discourse.”  “IRF is dedicated to the revival and reform of Islamic thought and its methodology in order to enable the ummah to deal effectively with present challenges and contribute to the progress of human civilization.

Amod Lele, CURA Fellow

September 22nd, 2017 in Events at CURA

Amod Lele will present and defend his working paper Disengaged Buddhism at 1:00 on October 6 at CURA.

Amod Lele, Senior Educational Technologist, Office of Digital Learning and Innovation

Amod Lele is Lecturer in Philosophy, Visiting Researcher in the Centre for the Study of Asia, and Senior Educational Technologist in the Office of Digital Learning and Innovation at Boston University. He received his PhD in religious studies from Harvard University in 2007, writing his dissertation on the ethics of the Indian Buddhist thinker Shantideva. He has published in Journal of Buddhist Ethics, Asian Studies Review, Journal of Integral Theory and Practice, Oxford Bibliographies in Hinduism and the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. He is a cofounder of the Indian Philosophy Blog and has his own blog on cross-cultural philosophy entitled Love of All Wisdom.

Email cura@bu.edu for a copy of his paper.

Click here for the full schedule of the CURA Colloquium this fall.

CURA Relaunch

September 22nd, 2017 in Events at CURA, Professor News

This fall we welcome new Director Tim Longman. Bob Hefner remains as a Faculty Associate and part of our Strategic Planning Committee. Tim comes to CURA after a stint as Director of BU’s African Studies Center. He is also Professor in the department of political science. At a party to kick off the year, Tim spoke about plans for a new Religion and World Affairs Colloquium and more student outreach to come.

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On the Passing of Peter L. Berger

July 3rd, 2017 in Professor News

Click here for our notice on the passing of Peter. 

Call for Proposals for New CURA Colloquium

April 26th, 2017 in Events at CURA

Call for Proposals for New CURA Colloquium
2017-18 Theme: “Religion and Social Engagement”

Boston University’s Institute for Culture, Religion, and World Affairs (CURA) invites BU faculty and graduate students to apply to become fellows in a new interdisciplinary colloquium on religion and world affairs that we are launching in the fall in cooperation with the BU School of Theology. The CURA Colloquium will involve bimonthly meetings throughout the academic year to discuss working papers on a chosen theme. The papers will be prepared by both the BU fellows and invited scholars from outside BU. The colloquium sessions will be open to the general public, with the expectation that all attendees will read the papers in advance and that the sessions will focus on providing feedback and suggestions to the authors. At the end of the colloquium, we anticipate collecting the best papers into an edited volume or a themed edition of a relevant journal.

 

The theme for the 2017-2018 colloquium is “Religion and Social Engagement.” We encourage the submission of proposals from any discipline that explore the ways in which religious institutions engage with their states and societies, the impact of religious social engagement, the theological and moral ideas behind various forms of social engagement, and other topics related to this broad theme. We hope to build a working group that draws from diverse disciplines, methods, and regions of the world. A committee of faculty will select the proposals from among those submitted, with the idea of accepting approximately 8-10. Participants in the Colloquium will be asked to prepare a working paper of 5,000-8,000 words that will be scheduled for presentation next year.  The papers will be made available a week in advance of their scheduled discussion. Fellows will be expected to attend all sessions, read papers in advance, and provide feedback for other participants. Colloquium sessions will be held on Fridays, 1:00-2:30 (on weeks where STH does not have faculty meetings). Fellows will receive a $1,000 stipend for successful participation in the colloquium. 

 

The new CURA Colloquium builds on the Religion Fellows Program sponsored by the School of Theology annually since 2010, which has brought together faculty and graduate students from throughout BU to develop research papers on an important theme in the study of religion. STH remains a co-sponsor and active participant in the CURA Colloquium, and as cosponsors, STH and CURA welcome proposals are welcomed from scholars from any school or college at BU.

 

Founded in 1985, CURA is the first interdisciplinary research center in the United States focused on religion and global affairs. CURA seeks to build a community of scholars from BU and beyond with a shared interest in religion and world affairs. Under the leadership of Peter Berger and Bob Hefner, CURA has sponsored 140 research projects in over 40 countries, resulting in the publication of 145 books, and organized countless academic lectures and other events. CURA joined the Pardee School of Global Affairs in 2015 and continues to sponsor collaborative research projects, public lectures, and gatherings for faculty, graduate students, and others, and to support the Pardee School’s curriculum in religion and global affairs. For more information, please contact Arlene Brennan at 617-353-5241 or arleneb@bu.edu or Timothy Longman at 617-353-9751 or longman@bu.edu.

The submission should consist of a few paragraphs detailing your chosen subject, and your cv. Please help us spread the word, and submit your proposal to Arlene Brennan by the deadline of May 22, 2017.