December 6th – Leah Daughtry gave a talk on religion in politics, and politics in religion, at the University of Virginia. Daughtry, former Chief Executive Officer of the Democratic National Convention, spoke of the importance of engaging across boundaries to achieve broader sociopolitical aims rather than getting caught up in partisan politics. In her talk, the fifth generation pastor elucidated how her deep religious training, knowledge, and leadership experience led her to politics, and how she has been inspired by her faith to become a “disrupter” of injustice and inequality in American society. At the same time, she stressed that the Democratic Party, including secular representatives and strands, needs to speak to the diverse faith traditions of its members, taking seriously how faith motivates politics across party lines.
Nov 8th 2018 – Russell Moore, leading evangelical critic of the close alignment of white evangelicals with President Donald Trump, delivered the Luce Lecture on Religion in Public at UVA. In his lecture, Dr Moore, President of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, cited cynicism rather than secularism as a major problem for his faith. He said many wonder whether it has become “just another badge of tribal belonging,” and called for a refocusing on God and the cross at the center of American Evangelicalism. Watch the full video here:
October 22nd, 2018 – Religion and Its Publics co-sponsored an interdisciplinary conference to investigate the rise of the Alt-Right and its complex relationship with religion. Held at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University, and broadcast live on C-SPAN, it featured three panels to explore the historical roots of the movement, the current state of affairs, and future trends. A recap of the event can be found here.
Full video of the conference, broken into three panels, is available here: Christianity and the Alt-Right in the past, Christianity and the Alt-Right in the present, and Christianity and the Alt-Right in the future.
On Thursday, October 4, Sharon Groves of Auburn Seminary and the Human Rights Campaign gave an interactive lecture about creating change from within institutions. In conversation with graduate and undergraduate students, Groves maintained that our lives are full of institutions, and yet everywhere today institutions are in crisis. It is in these crises, however, that those within institutions can grow and challenge previous assumptions in the service of a more inclusive and just future.
Date: October 4, 2018
Religion and Its Publics hosted a manuscript workshop for Eugene Rogers, Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, in Charlottesville on September 27th. Rogers new book is titled The Analogy of Blood, or Why Blood Persists, and offers a theological analysis of blood language. Rogers explores how the language of blood has been used, often for ill, in the Christian tradition, and offers a constructive proposal for how Christian theology should conceive of blood.
Date: September 27, 2018