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                CSRC Events

Metanexus Templeton Research Lectures | Annual CSRC Spring Lecture| University Seminar in Religion & Culture | Conferences | Past Events |

Past Events

Spring 2008 | Fall 2007 | Spring 2007 | Fall 2006 | Summer 2006 | Spring 2006 | Fall 2005 | Spring 2005 |Fall 2004 | Spring 2004 |
Fall 2003

Spring 2009

"Ontology, Scale, and Time: Inferring the Origins of Andean Religion and its Practice," the annual Howard L. Harrod lecture by professor Tom Dillehay, was held in the Divinity School art room on April 20, 2009.
Links to video:
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On Tuesday, March 10 in Benton Chapel, the CSRC hosted the annual Mafoi Carlisle Bogitsh University Seminar in Religion and Culture with Professor John Thatamanil of Vanderbilt Divinity School. The lecture was titled “How Many Ultimate Realities Are There? Religious Diversity and the Trinity."

The Nashville community was invited to participate in an interfaith Prayer and Celebration Service commemorating the inauguration on Tuesday, January 20, in Vanderbilt's Benton Chapel. The service included readings and music from Vanderbilt faculty and students, including Rev. James Lawson, Provost Richard McCarty, student leaders, and the Voices of Praise Gospel Choir. This event was co-sponsored by the CSRC and several other campus departments.

Fall 2008

On Saturday, November 22, CSRC Graduate Research Fellow Mike Tidwell gave a public lecture sponsored by the Nashville chapter of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. Mike discussed esults from ethnographic fieldwork in east Tennessee. For three months this summer, the Anthropology graduate student attended churches, civic meetings and public events in a small town east of Knoxville, as part of the CSRC’s project on Religion and Politics in Tennessee.

On Thursday, November 20, the CSRC seminar, "Religious Themes in Ugandan AfroPop and Rwandan Reconciliation" featured our 2008 CSRC summer fellows, Gerald Liu and Joshua Bazuin.

On Thursday, September 11 the CSRC co-sponsored a free public screening of Divided We Fall, a film about hate-based violence in the U.S. following the 2001 terrorist attacks. The film was shown in the Sarratt Cinema, with an introduction by CSRC faculty fellow Richard McGregor. CSRC graduate affiliates Elizabeth Covington and and Zoe Newell organized the event with additional sponsorship from the Warren Center and the International Lens series.

On Tuesday, September 23, the CSRC hosted our first Seminar in Religion and Culture of the 2008-2009 academic year. The summer field researchers from the Project on Religion and Politics reported on their summer ethnographic work.

Spring 2008

"The Uncanny Eloquence of Earthly Beings," an Ecology and Spirituality public lecture by David Abram (keynote address for conference, Giving Voice to Other Beings), was held on May 2, 2008.

Giving Voice to Other Beings, an Ecology and Spirituality conference, was held on May 2-4, 2008 at the Scarritt Bennett Center.

Ecology and Spirituality Speaker Series: Social and Environmental Justice - Perspectives from and for Global Feminism, April 23-25, 2008.

"Environmental and Gender Justice - Linked Paths to Social Justice," an Ecology and Spirituality public lecture by Srilatha Batliwala (co-sponsored by the Commons and the Global Feminisms Collaborative of the Center for Ethics), was held on April 23.

"Climate Change and Consumption," an Ecology and Spirituality Conference, was held on April 18-19, 2008 at the Vanderbilt Law School.

The God in Music City Capstone Conference was held on April 17, 2008.

"War or Civilization: A Faculty Forum" a panel sponsored by the CSRC, the Center for Ethics, the Vanderbilt Department of Philosophy, and the Office of the Dean of Students, was held on April 16, 2008 in Flynn Auditorium, Law School.

"Rituals and Institutions," a Templeton Research Lecture featuring Dan Sperber, was held at the Vanderbilt Law School on Thursday, April 10, 2008.

"Beliefs and Values," a Templeton Research Lecture featuring Dan Sperber, was held at the Vanderbilt Law School on April 8, 2008.

"Asking the Right Questions," a Templeton Research Lecture featuring Dan Sperber, was held in the Moore Room at the Vanderbilt Law School on Monday, April 7, 2008.

"Pentacostalism, HIV/AIDS and South African Women's Burdens," part of the Global Feminisms Brownbag, lecture by Katy Attanasi, Vanderbilt PhD student and CSRC Graduate Fellow, was held on April 8, 2008.

"Navigating Pathways and Perspectives of Patient Care," a Religion and Genomics conference, was held on April 3-4, 2008.

"We Speak For Ourselves: A Poet, a Prophet, and Voices for Change in the 21st Century," a conference sponsored the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities (with support from the CSRC) commemorating the 40th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, was held on April 3-4, 2008. Link to the Robert Penn Warren Center.

(non-CSRC event of interest) "Religion as Linguistic Practice," a lecture by Dr. Webb Keane of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Michigan, was held on April 4, 2008.

Religion and Genetics Public Lecture with Ruth Schwartz Cowan, "Heredity and Hope: Intersections of Genetics and Faith in the Clinic," April 2, 2008.

"God in Country Music Videos," a God in Music City event co-sponsored by the CSRC and the Divinity School, was held on April 2, 2008.

"The Lord is My Shepherd: Variations on Psalm 23" Performance (co-sponsored by Blair School of Music), was held on March 30, 2008 at the Turner Recital Hall.

The Social Justice Program at the Vanderbilt Law School hosted an Equity Offset Workshop featuring Professor of Law Michael Vandenbergh, Associate Professor of Political Science Brooke Ackerly, economist Chad Stone, and head of Global Giving Dennis Whittle, on March 19, 2008.

Healing Ecology: A New Spiritual Perspective on the Challenge of Consumerism, a CSRC Howard Harrod Lecture featuring David Loy, Besl Family Professor of Ethics, Religion and Society at Xavier University, was held on March 18, 2008 in Benton Chapel. Link to video:
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The 60th Anniversary of McCollum v. Board of Education: A Conversation on the Separation of Church and State, a CSRC Spring Lecture featuring James McCollum, was held on March 17, 2008.

"Thinking With Franz Rosenzweig," a symposium co-sponsored by the CSRC and the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, was held on March 13-14, 2008. Link to the Robert Penn Warren Center.

"Strange Bedfellows: Gay Christian Music", a concert co-sponsored by the CSRC and the Carpenter Program, well be held at the Basement on March 13, 2008. The concert featured artists TRiLiGi, Jeremy Ryan, and Justin Ryan. Link to the Carpenter Program.

Author and Filmmaker Jason Berry hosted a screening and discussion of his film Vows of Silence on Wednesday, March 12 in Buttrick Hall 101.

"Conceiving Social Justice," part of the Global Feminisms Brownbag, lecture by Susan Schoenbohm, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy and CSRC fellow, on March 11, 2008.

"Tryin' to Get Home: An Evening of Sacred Blues," a "God in Music City" concert featuring such artists as Dave Perkins, Ashley Cleveland, and Kevin Max, was held on February 21, 2008 at the Downtown Presbterian Church in Nashville.

"God in Music City" Nashville Houses of Worship Tour (co-sponsored by American Studies), was held on February 16, 2008. Link to God in Music City website.

"Music, Religion and the South: Notes from the Field," the Mafoi Carlisle Bogitsh Seminar on Religion and Culture featuring Music, Religion and the South Director and Professor of Homiletics John McClure, was held on February 12, 2008.

"Shadow Occupations: The Gendered Call to Ministry," part of the Global Feminisms Brownbag, lecture by Richard Pitt, Assistant Professor of Sociology. February 12, 2008.

"Serve God, Save the Planet," an Ecology and Spirituality lecture featuring James Sleeth, was held on February 6, 2008.
Link to video:
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Community Breakfast - "Project Pyramid: Religion and the Business of Alleviating Poverty," featuring Religion & Politics fellow, Assistant Professor Graham Reside was held on January 24. Link to Project Pyramid website.

"God in Music City" at the Bluebird Cafe, a concert featuring The New Agrarians and Julie Lee, was held on January 15-16, 2008.

Gregory F. Barz, Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology and Director of the CSRC Music, Religion and the South project, hosted the God in Music City CD Release Party (link to website) at Vanderbilt's Commons Center on January 12, 2008.

Fall 2007

Religious Environmentalism: Promises and Challenges, a lecture by Roger S. Gottlieb of Worcester Polytechnic Institute, was given on November 15, 2007. Link to video.

Imagining Europe: Turning Points in the Evolution of a Continent, an international symposium hosted by Vanderbilt's Max Kade Center for European & German Studies, was hosted on November 1-4, 2007.

In October and November of 2007, Vanderbilt University hosted its thirtieth annual Holocaust Lecture Series, Broken Silence.

Religion and Politics in Tennessee: A Report from the Field was held on October 30, 2007, Divinity G-27. Researchers in the CSRC Religion and Politics project presented on their summer field work. Link to podcast.

The Conference on Religion and Economy: Focus on Poverty, featuring Douglas Hicks and Rebecca Blank, was held on October 16-17, 2007, and featured the lectures "Moral Agency of the Poor and the Well-Connected: Framing an Agenda for Addressing Global Poverty" and "The Role of Government and the Role of the Market: Is there a Religious View?"

CSRC University Seminar, October 5, 2007, 3:00 - 5:00 PM, Buttrick Hall Room 123. The CSRC Summer Graduate fellows reported on their field research.

The CSRC hosted a Fall Open House on Tuesday, October 25 from 4:30 - 6:30 PM in the atrium of Buttrick Hall.

The CSRC’s Ecology and Spirituality research group and the Department of Economics co-sponsored Reconciling Biophysical Sustainability & Social Equity, a public lecture with Herman Daly, author of For the Common Good and professor of Public Policy at the University of Maryland. Thursday, September 27, 6:00 pm in Furman Hall room 114.

Spring 2007

Consciousness, Free Will, and God: The final 2006-2007 Templeton Research Lecture by Christof Koch, Lois and Victor Troendle Professor of Cognitive and Behavioral Biology at the California Institute of Technology, was given May 4 at 3 p.m. in Flynn Auditorium. A reception followed.

Rap Sessions Town Hall Forum on Hip-Hop and Gender: The CSRC Masculinities Seminar Group joined with other centers in co-sponsoring this event on April 12. The event featured Bakari Kitwana, Joan Morgan, Tiffany R. Patterson, Rosa Clemente and Tracy Sharpley-Whiting.

Reverend James M. Lawson, Jr. gave the University Seminar in Religion and Culture on Wednesday, April 11 at 6 p.m. in Benton Chapel. His lecture was entitled "Moving Ourselves from Unknown Peril to Noble Vision." A reception followed. Lawson was the Distinguished Visiting University Professor and a Fellow at the Center for the Study of Religion and Culture. He spoke to the New York Times last October about his time at Vanderbilt.

On the Lip(s) of Miriam's Well: Jews|Women|Cultures, co-sponsored by the CSRC, took place March 18-20 at Vanderbilt University. The three days of multimedia performance, conversation and lecture brought together artists and academics from North Africa, North America and South Asia to undertake a global examination of Jewish women's cultural practices.

The Politics of Faith in America: On Tuesday, March 27, Ray Suarez gave the 2007 CSRC Spring Lecture on Religion and Culture and the 2007 Vanderbilt University Divinity School Howard L. Harrod lecture. Suarez has been a Senior Correspondent on The NewsHour since 1999. His latest book, The Holy Vote: The Politics of Faith in America was published in August 2006. The lecture was held at 7 p.m. in Benton Chapel. A reception followed. Link Vanderbilt Register article.

The Problem of Consciousness in Philosophy, Religion and Science: The 2006-2007 Templeton Research Lectures will feature Christof Koch, Lois and Victor Troendle Professor of Cognitive and Behavioral Biology at the California Institute of Technology. The first two in a series of three lectures were held on March 19 and 20 at 6:00 p.m. in Flynn Auditorium. Professor Koch's March 19 lecture was titled "The Problem of Consciousness in Philosophy, Religion and Science." The March 20 lecture was "What Do We Know about Consciousness and the Brain?" The final lecture in the series, "Consciousness, Free Will, and God," will be held on May 4. Link to Vanderbilt Register article.

Neuroelectric and Neuroimaging Correlates of Meditation: Stephen M. Carlson, M.D., VA Chief Resident in Psychiatry, and CSRC Project Fellow with Religion and Science lectured on Monday, March 6, from 3-4 p.m. (pdf).

Massachusetts v. EPA: A Case Study in Science, Law and Public Policy: Ecology and Spirituality co-sponsored a talk by Jonathan Martel, Partner at Arnold & Porter LLP on Friday, February 9 at noon in the Flynn Auditorium (pdf).

Religion and Comparative Allegory : Anthony Yu, Carl Darling Buck Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Humanities and Professor Emeritus of Religion and Literature (U. Chicago, Chicago Divinity School), presented on Thursday, January 25, 4 -6 p.m., in Divinity Hall G-27 for the CSRC University Seminar (pdf). Sponsored by CSRC's Group on Religion and Literatures.

Fall 2006

Summer Reflections in November: This CSRC University Seminar featured presentations by the CSRC's 2006 Summer Graduate Fellows on Thursday, November 30; 4-6 p.m., Buttrick 123 (pdf).

An Inconvenient Truth: The Ecology and Spirituality Group co-sponsored showings of the documentary An Inconvenient Truth Wednesday, October 25 5:30-8 p.m. at St. Augustine's Episcopal Chapel and Sunday, October 29 at 5 p.m. at West End Church. Ecology and Spirituality CSRC Fellows also participated in a Global Warming Film and Discussion Series, Mon. Nov.27-30. A showing of the documentary at 7 p.m. was followed by discussion at 9 p.m. at Sarratt Cinema. Register Article.

Keeping Home: Home-Schooling and the Practice of Conservative Protestant Identity: Monica Smatlak Liao, CSRC Summer Fellow (2005) defended her dissertation on Friday, November 10 3:30-5 p.m. in Divinity 130. Committee members included CSRC Fellow Beth Conklin (Anthropology) as well as Kathleen Flake (Divinity), Jay Geller (Divinity), Laura Carpenter (Sociology), and Bonnie Miller-McLemore (Divinity).

Postcolonial Intersections: Worldly and Spiritual Power Set to Qawwali Music: James Newell, CSRC Research Assistant and Doctoral Candidate presented his research on Thursday, November 2 from 4:30-5:30 p.m. in Buttrick 163.

A Theology Between Fear and Trembling: On Why Only Atheists Can Believe: The CSRC co-sponsored this guest lecture by Slavoj Zizek, University of Ljubljana (Slovenia) who presented Friday, November 3, Stevenson Center Lecture Hall 4327 at 4:30 p.m.

The Merchants of Babylon: Entrepreneurs in the Sixth Century BCE: This CSRC University Seminar featured Cornelia Wunsch, Research Associate for the School for Oriental and African Studies, London on Thursday, October 26, 4:10-6 p.m. in Buttrick 123 (pdf). Reception followed. This Seminar is funded in part by a gift from the family of Mafoi Bogitsh.

Irreconcilable Differences? Artist-Educators and Religion:
Friday, October 27, 10:00-11:45 a.m. at the Ben Schulman Center for Jewish Life, Vanderbilt University. Panelists included CSRC fellow Robin Jensen as well as Alison Helm, Ruth Weisberg, Harvey Breverman, and Eleanor Heartney. This event, part of the Southeastern College Art Conference, was sponsored by the CSRC, the Program in Jewish Studies, University Chaplain and Affiliated Ministries, Divinity School, and the Ben Schulman Center for Jewish Life. Link to Register Article.

The Nashville Forum on Christianity and the Environment took place on Saturday, September 30, 2006 at the Scarritt-Bennett Center (Fondren Hall), from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (pdf). A gathering of community Christian leaders shared information, ideas, and resources. This free event was sponsored by the CSRC Ecology and Spirituality Project. Brochure Information (pdf).

Nuclear Power is Not the Answer to Global Warming: Dr. Helen Caldicott lectured and read excerpts from her most recent book on Tuesday, October 3, 2006 at 7 p.m. in Ingram Hall, Blair School of Music, Vanderbilt University. The event, advertised by the CSRC Ecology and Spirituality Group was followed by a book signing and refreshments (pdf).

Building Toward a Sustainable Future: An Evening with William McDonough, architect, environmentalist, capitalist, designer, teacher and visionary presented a public lecture Tuesday, September 26, 7 p.m., Benton Chapel, Vanderbilt University. For more information go to: www.tnfund.org or read the Vanderbilt Register article.

A Report from the Field: This CSRC University Seminar featured the Research Findings of the Religion and Politics Summer Fieldworkers (pdf) on Thursday, September 21, Buttrick Hall 101. The researchers are part of the CSRC Religion and Politics project and the Seminar is funded in part by a gift from the family of Mafoi Bogitsh.

Sexual Wisdom in John Updike: Volney Gay, CSRC Director, resumed the popular series Think Out of the (Lunch) Box on the topic of novelist John Updike's use of sexual wisdom in the portrayal of some of his characters. The lecture, which was free and open to the public, was held on September 6, 2006 at the Nashville Public Library.

A Time for Reflection, A Roundtable Discussion: The discussion featured Vanderbilt Faculty Rebecca Brown, Beth Conklin, Kate Daniels, Gregg Horowitz, Doug Knight, James Lawson, Richard McGregor, Bill Partridge, Jack Sasson, David Wood and others (pdf). It was held on Monday, September 11, in Flynn Auditorium at the Law School.

Summer 2006

Men, Masculinities, Fatherhood: Sexuality, Race, and Religion in South Africa and the United States: Dr. Graham Lindegger, Professor of Psychology, and Dr. Robert Morrell, Professor of History, both of the University of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa) spoke on "HIV/AIDS, Masculinity, and Questioning Illusions" and "Aspirations of Fatherhood amongst Male Students in South African High Schools" during this seminar which took place July 12-17, 2006 (pdf). The event featured lectures, discussion, and the reading of Baba: Men and Fatherhood in South Africa.

Spring 2006

100 Artists See God took place from February 4 to April 16, 2006 at the Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art. This exhibition explored questions such as: How do contemporary artists see God?  How, and why, might the point of view of artists reinforce -- or stand in contrast to -- that of others?  And, what comfort or answers do people seek in spiritual undertakings of varying kinds? This program and related lectures were co-sponsored by the CSRC. Read about this exhibition in the Nashville Scene.

To Not Be Sorry: Moral Life in North Carolina Tobacco Country: Peter Benson of the Department of Anthropology at Harvard University presented his dissertation research on April 13, 2006 in 206 Buttrick Hall. This talk was sponsored by the Vanderbilt University Anthropology Department and the CSRC. (pdf)

Religious Conservatives in Welfare State Politics: Jill Quadagno of the Department of Sociology at Florida State University presented a lecture on April 11, 2006 in the Bishop Joseph Johnson Black Cultural Center, Room 118. This event was sponsored by the Department of Sociology, Vanderbilt Institute for Public Policy Studies, Department of Political Science, Department of Religious Studies, and the Center for the Study of Religion and Culture. (pdf)

Idolatry and the Image of God in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. This panel discussion took place on April 11, 2006 in the Vanderbilt University Divinity School. This event, co-sponsored by the CSRC, was part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit (see above).

Natural Evils? From Lisbon to New Orleans: Susan Neiman, Director of the Einstein Forum, delivered the Berry Lecture in Ethics on Monday, April 10, 2006 at 6 p.m. in Wilson 103. Professor Neiman also met with interested faculty and students for a lunchtime seminar on April 11, 2006 at the Humanities Center. She discussed material from her book, Moral Clarity: A Guide for Grownup Idealists, on the subject of heroes and religion in contemporary culture. These events were sponsored by the Vanderbilt University Philosophy Department and the CSRC.

Visuality and the Question of God in Contemporary Art: David Morgan, Deusenberg Professor of Christianity and the Arts and Professor of Humanities and Art History at Valparaiso University, presented on April 6, 2006 in the Vanderbilt Divinity School. This lecture, co-sponsored by the CSRC, was part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art.

Conquest and Occupation: Joshua and His Successors: Douglas A. Knight, Drucilla Moore Buffington Professor of Hebrew Bible and Director of the Center for the Study of Religion and Culture, presented as part of the Relevant Religion Series on this topic on March 13, 20 and 27 and April 3, 2006 at the Scarritt-Bennett Center. This four-part class was featured in the Vanderbilt Register.

ArtistSpeak: Contemporary Artists in Nashville Respond to 100 Artists See God: This panel took place on March 30, 2006 in the Theatre of Watkins College of Art and Design. It was co-sponsored by the CSRC as part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art.

Christian Establishments and the Neglect of Faith: Rodney Stark presented the fourth and last lecture for the 2005-2006 Templeton Research Lectures (TRL) on Tuesday, March 28, 2006 in the Vanderbilt Student Life Center. Complete details about these lectures and the CSRC's Templeton Project can be found on our TRL website.

In America, All Religions are True: Implications of the New Pluralism for Democracy: The 2006 Annual Spring Lecture featured Robert Wuthnow, Director of the Center for the Study of Religion (CSR) at Princeton University, discussing democracy and pluralism on March 23, 2006 in Benton Chapel (pdf). Robert Wuthnow was featured in the Vanderbilt Register.

"Religion" as Colonial Fantasy, or How the West Views the Rest: Richard King, CSRC Senior Research Fellow, presented the CSRC University Seminar in Religion and Culture on March 16, 2006 in 123 Buttrick Hall. (pdf)

Postmodern Heretics: The Catholic Imagination in Contemporary Art: Eleanor Heartney, writer and cultural critic, spoke on March 16, 2006 at Belmont University. This lecture, co-sponsored by the CSRC, was part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art.

Jewish Sectarianism and the Triumph of Monotheism: Rodney Stark presented the third of four 2005-2006 Templeton Research Lectures (TRL) on March 14, 2006 in the Vanderbilt Student Life Center. Complete details about these lectures and the CSRC's Templeton Project can be found on our TRL website.

Delicate Balance: Modernism and Religion in Museums Today: Ena Heller, Director of the Museum of Biblical Art in New York City and editor of Reluctant Partners: Art and Religion in Dialogue, gave a lecture on March 2, 2006 in Shamblin Theater at David Lipscomb University. This lecture, co-sponsored by the CSRC, was part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art.

Subsidized Religions: 6000 Years of Negligence and Laxity: Rodney Stark presented the second of four 2005-2006 Templeton Research Lectures (TRL) on February 28, 2006 in the Vanderbilt Student Life Center. Complete details about these lectures and the CSRC's Templeton Project can be found on our TRL website. Link to podcast.

The History of Fools for Christ: Reverend Ethan Acres fused evangelical Christianity with contemporary art practice in a lecture on February 28, 2006 in Shamblin Theater at David Lipscomb University. This lecture, co-sponsored by the CSRC, was part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art.

Ethics, Form, and Experience: Susan Sontag and Elfriede Jelinek: Stephen Dowden of Brandeis University presented on February 23, 2006 in 217 Furman Hall. This lecture was sponsored by the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages, Center for European and German Studies, Comparative Literature Program, Department of English, Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, University Lectures Committee, and Center for the Study of Religion and Culture.

Introduction: The Market Approach to Understanding Religion: Rodney Stark presented the first of four 2005-2006 Templeton Research Lectures (TRL) on February 14, 2006 in the Vanderbilt Student Life Center. Complete details about these lectures and the CSRC's Templeton Project can be found on our TRL website. Read an Interview with Rodney Stark in the National Catholic Register.

Jews and Alcoholism: Race (AGAIN) and Medicine (AGAIN): Distinguished Professor, Sander Gilman (Emory University), spoke on February 10, 2006, in 123 Buttrick Hall. This public talk, aimed at a broad and cross-disciplinary audience, reflected upon interconnections between race, identity, religion, and the history of medicine.

How Artists Represent the Abstract Notion of God: Meg Cranston, noted artist and curator presented on February 9, 2006 at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art. This lecture, co-sponsored by the CSRC, was part of the 100 Artists See God exhibit.

On Writing the Play The Exonerated: Jessica Blank, playwright of The Exonerated, spoke about her experiences on January 31, 2006 in 123 Buttrick Hall. The Exonerated, based on interviews with 40 death row prisoners and their families, illuminates the sometimes harsh truth about our criminal justice system while teaching us about human capacities for both cruelty and compassion (pdf).

Fall 2005

Summer Research Reports: The CSRC Seminar in Religion and Culture was held on December 1, 2005 in Buttrick 123. The CSRC 2005 Summer Research Fellows (pdf) presented their research projects.

Globalization and Religious Diversity: The Case of Columbia: Ana Maria Bidegain Greising, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, spoke on December 1, 2005 in Garland Hall, Room 101. This event was co-sponsored by the Department of Religious Studies, the Center for the Americas, and the Center for the Study of Religion and Culture.

Strange Bedfellows or Born-Again Lovers? The Emerging Alliance of Religion and  Ecology: Mary Evelyn Tucker, co-founder and co-director of the Forum on Religion and Ecology, presented a lecture on November 15, 2005 in Benton Chapel (pdf). Until recently, Mary Evelyn Tucker served as Professor of Religion at Bucknell University (specializing in Asian Religions and Religion and Ecology). Dr. Tucker also directed a series of twelve conferences on Religions of the World and Ecology at Harvard's Center for the Study of World Religions.

Author, King, and Christ in Shakespeare's Histories: Jeffrey Knapp, Professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley met with interested students and faculty on November 11, 2005, in Buttrick 162. He discussed a paper he has recently written on the subject of Shakespeare's second history tetralogy and the importance of religious traditions to that set of plays. He also presented a lecture on Sacred Songs, Popular Prices: Secularization in The Jazz Singer on November 10, 2005 in Wilson Hall, Room 103 (pdf).

Hard Choices: Environmental Decision making in the 21st Century: Carol M. Browner, former Director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), spoke on on November 3, 2005, at noon at Flynn Auditorium (pdf). This event was co-sponsored by the Environmental Law Society, the Vanderbilt Center for Environmental Management Studies, and the Center for the Study of Religion and Culture.

The Limits of Self-Interest: Capitalist Vernaculars and Economic Moralities in Guatemala, Germany and the United States: Religion and Economy Project Fellow Edward F. Fischer presented his research on October 28, 2005 in 123 Buttrick Hall (pdf).

Critical Inquiry and Religious Belief: Science, Religion, and the Mission of Higher Education (pdf) Rev. Edward A. Malloy, Douglas Knight, CSRC Director, John McCarthy, Lenn Goodman, and Senta V. Greene, CSRC Fellows, and Wallace LeStourgeon participated in a panel discussion on Science and Religion on October 27, 2005, in 123 Buttrick Hall. The panel addressed the current wars over evolution in the periodic press prompted by advocates of intelligent design. For written comments by panelists about intelligent design, click on the following name: Douglas Knight, John McCarthy, Wallace LeStourgeon. This event was sponsored by the Vanderbilt University Faculty Senate, the CSRC Project in Religion and Science, and The Metanexus Templeton Research Lectures in Religion and Science program at Vanderbilt University. Link to Vanderbilt Register article.

Rationality and the Possibility of Conversion: Professor Lynn Ramey presented research for the Religion and Literature Seminar, on October 20, 2005, in 163 Buttrick Hall. Professor Ramey is a medievalist with interests in how medieval thinkers tried to define personhood and whether someone could be part of a universal Christian church. Her research deals with Christians, Jews, Arabs, and "monstrous races."

80 Years after the Monkey Trial: Why It Still Matters: Volney Gay, a participant in a Panel Discussion on the Scopes Trial for the opening night of the LA Theatre Works production (October 19, 2005) addressed Intelligent Design Theory (link to op-ed piece).

Religion and Film: Stephen Prince came to the CSRC to lead a seminar entitled Trends in Film Studies: Religion, Culture, and Program Development September 29, 2005 in Buttrick 123. His presentation of Guns and Cameras: From the PCA to the Passion of Christ with graphics and clips was held on September 30, 2005, in Buttrick 102.

Spring 2005

Dark Vibrations: Ecofeminism and the Democracy of Creation: Dr. Catherine Keller gave the CSRC Annual Spring Lecture on April 7, 2005 (pdf). Her lecture was co-sponsored by Vanderbilt Divinity School as the 2005 Howard L. Harrod Lecture (pdf).

Religion and Science: Two Cultures or One?: Richard Haglund, CSRC Senior Fellow, presented for the CSRC University Seminar in Religion and Culture on March 30, 2005 at the Vanderbilt University Club.

Religion and International Development: Katherine Marshall, formerly of the World Bank lectured On Religion, Development and World Poverty on February 24, 2005 (pdf). Works by Marshall include: Africa: How and Why is Faith Important and Relevant for Development? (pdf) and Religious Faith and Development: Rethinking Development Debates (pdf) a speech given at the Religious NGOs and International Development Conference, Oslo, Norway, April 7, 2005.

On Preserving Ancient Mayan Culture: Arthur Demarest, Ingram Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Vanderbilt Cancuen Archaeological and Community Development projects, lectured on the preservation of ancient Maya culture on February 11, 2005 (link to article).

After Empire: The Art and Ethos of Enduring Peace: Noted Ethicist Sharon Welch, who earned her PhD in Religion from Vanderbilt, discussed her book in a lecture on February 18, 2005 (pdf).

Banking for the Poor: Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Prize Winner and Founder of the Grameen Bank, gave a lecture at Vanderbilt University entitled The Banker to the Poor: Micro-lending and the Battle Against World Poverty (pdf) on January 28, 2005. Yunus is a Vanderbilt alumnus.

 


Fall 2004

Maimonides and His Milieu:The CSRC sponsored this two-day conference, held on November 14-15, 2004 (pdf).

On Religion and Economy: An Interdisciplinary Approach: James Foster and Douglas Meeks presented the First Annual CSRC Faculty Research Lecture on Religion and Culture on October 20, 2004. This event marked the unveiling of the Religion and Economy study group, the first major initiative of the CSRC (press release, pdf).

Where We Stand: Voices of Southern Dissent: The CSRC and the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities sponsored a panel discussion led by several contributing authors to this recently published important volume on the topic of politics and the South. The event was held on October 5, 2004 (press release, pdf).

The Question of God: The CSRC & Nashville Public Television presented a viewing of the documentary on September 13, 2004 at the Stadium Club.


Spring 2004

On the Rise of Global Religious Violence: Mark Juergensmeyer gave the 2004 CSRC Spring Lecture on April 15, 2004.

What is Mysticism? Perspectives from Two Disciplines: Dr. J. Patout Burns and Dr. Ralph W. Hood presented a comparative discussion on mysticism (pdf) on April 13, 2004.


 

The Southern Way of Life: The History of a Concept: Charles Reagan Wilson presented this paper on Tuesday April 6, 2004. This event was co-sponsored by the the University Lectures Committee, the American and Southern Studies program, the Department of English, the Department of History, the African American Studies program, and the CSRC. The Southern Way of Life: The History of a Concept traces the construction of a distinctive regional mind setover time. The notion that a particular way of living is at the heart of southern culture is an idea claimed by quite different groups of southerners for a variety of purposes from the early nineteenth century to the present. Examining the use of "tradition" after the Civil War, the work of the Vanderbilt Agrarians, the influence of southern writers, and the work of contemporary African American intellectuals to redefine regional identity, this paper reveals the history of a significant but seldom scrutinized idea.

The Clergy Sexual Abuse Crisis: Reform and Renewal in the Catholic Community: Paul Dokecki, Vanderbilt Professor of Psychology and Human & Organizational Development, presented on his latest book for the CSRC Conversation With The Author Series on March 30, 2004 (pdf).

The Science and Religion Dialogue: The Application of Chaos Theology: Dr. Sjoerd L. Bonting came to Vanderbilt lectured on March 17, 2004.

Psychology, Religion, and Homosexuality: Critical Responses to Reparative Therapy: The Critical Responses to Reparative Therapy Conference was held on Saturday, February 7, 2004. Panelists Dr. Daniel Helminiak, clinical professor of psychiatry at Emory University, and Carlton Cornett, a Nashville psychotherapist whose practice serves the gay community, were invited by the CSRC to speak on the topic, The Theory and Practice of Reparative Therapy. The Conference received media attention in The Tennessean.


Fall 2003

The CSRC celebrated its Inaugural Open House on Thursday, October 30, 2003.

Bonhoeffer film and panel discussion, Belcourt Theatre, September 2003.


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