On April 21 and 22, Professor Bob Hefner hosted an International Research Conference at Georgetown University, entitled “Religious Change and Gender Relations in Southeast Asia: What the Policy Community Needs to Know.” Sponsored by the Luce Foundation and co-hosted by Katherine Marshall of the Berkeley Center at Georgetown, the conference was the second of three international research conferences CURA is co-organizing with the Indonesian Consortium for Religious Studies at Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. The conferences bring together scholars and policy analysts from eight countries in Southeast Asia, in an effort to provide state-of-the-field perspectives on religious change for policy analysts working on within the Southeast Asian region.
Click here for a video of the panel discussion.
It’s been announced that CURA has officially joined several other prestigious institutes within the new Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University. We are looking forward to many fruitful collaborations cross discipline in the future. Read the announcement here.
Professor Jeffrey Rubin guest-edited a special issue of the Latin American Research Review entitled, “Lived Religion and Lived Citizenship in Latin America’s Zones of Crisis,” along with David Smilde of Tulane University and Ben Junge of SUNY-New Paltz.
Rubin directed the four-year collaborative project, based at CURA, that examined the ways in which religious and political meanings and practices are constituted in social movements and locations of poverty and exclusion in Latin America. Case studies include Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Peru, Venezuela, and the borderlands between the United States and Mexico. Contributors are scholars from anthropology, history, political science, and sociology.
Ahmet Selim Tekelioglu is a Research Fellow for the Public Ethics and Citizenship in Plural Societies research cluster of Contending Modernities program, funded by CURA and the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at University of Notre Dame. Ahmet carried out research in Boston, San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles over the last 2 years. The following photos are from Bob Hefner and Ahmet’s follow-up visit to the San Francisco Bay Area in November 2014.
Carol Ferrara is a Research Fellow for the Contending Modernities project funded by CURA and the Kroc Institute for Peace at Notre Dame. Carol has been carrying out research in Paris, Lyon and Lille, France over the past 15 months. The following photos are from Bob Hefner’s visit to Paris in early October 2014.
Contrary to some media mis-impressions, Islamic education in most countries of the world is dynamic and forward-looking. On October 29-31, the Faculty of Tarbiya and Teacher Training at the Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University in Jakarta, Indonesia, hosted an international conference on innovation in Islamic education. Bob Hefner was invited to present the conference’s keynote address. He spoke on, “Mediating Modernity through Educational Innovation: The Cultural Past and Pivotal Future of Islamic Schooling.”
Information is now available for the Religion Fellows Program for Faculty who include religion in their academic research area. The seminar series is funded by stipend.
Click here for information on the program.
On April 10, Elizabeth Shakman Hurd, professor of political science at Northwestern University and the author of The Politics of Secularism in International Relations (Princeton 2008), spoke to a audience on the politics of religious freedom. Hurd is co-organizer of a multiyear project of the same name, funded by the Luce Foundation.
Partnership with Luce and ICRS-Yogyakarta for Project on Religion and Public Policy in Southeast Asia
With funding from the Henry Luce Foundation, CURA joined with the Indonesian Consortium for Religious Studies (ICRS) at Gadjah Mada University in Indonesia to organize the first international conference in a three year project on how states and societies are responding to religious change in eight Southeast Asian Countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Myanmar, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines. The ICRS heads the project, and has brought together research teams in each of the Southeast Asian countries. CURA is coordinating the U.S.-based wing of the project, focusing on how U.S. policy analysts and think tanks perceive and respond to religious change in the Southeast Asian region. Next year’s conference will be held in Washington DC; the 2016 conference will take place in Bangkok, Thailand. This year’s conference included visits from ministers in Indonesia’s Ministry of Religion as well as the U.S. Embassy. It also featured a speech on the challenge of pluralism from the much-respected Sultan of Yogyakarta, as well as a two-hour appearance on a nationally-broadcast Indonesian talk show.
Toby Matthiesen, research fellow at Pembroke College at the University of Cambridge in England joined us for a talk on the 20th of March, entitled ‘Sectarianism in the Middle East’. Matthiesen argues that gulf state regimes pit citizens against each other with the narrative of a “Shia threat”. He estimates that this is an attempt to quash demands for democratic reform and accountability. To learn more about Matthiesen’s work, check out the event information, or the speaker’s website.