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Lecture on American religion and politics to take place October 25


Stephen Prothero, chair of Boston University's department of religion will deliver the Interfaith Week keynote. The lecture is also part of the Center for Ethics' fall programming.

Thursday, October 19, 2017 02:10 PM

The Muhlenberg College Center for Ethics will continue exploring the theme of “Troubling Truth” on Oct. 25 with a lecture by Stephen Prothero, chair of the department of religion at Boston University.

The talk is entitled “A Cloud of Unknowing in American Religion & Politics.” It will take place at 7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum, and is free and open to the public.

Prothero will examine the political effects of religious ignorance in an era of “fake news” and “agnotology” and suggests ways to improve our civic life by fostering greater religious literacy.

Prothero is the author of numerous books. He has commented on religion on hundreds of National Public Radio programs, and on television. Prothero was the chief academic adviser for the critically acclaimed six-hour WGBH-TV series, “God in America.”

The event is co-sponsored by the chaplain’s office, Department of Religion Studies, Department of Languages, Literatures & Cultures, Institute for Jewish-Christian Understanding and the Muhlenberg Interfaith Community.

Subsequent fall Center for Ethics events include:

Woodrow Wilson Fellow Achy Obejas lecture and reading
Nov. 1, 7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum
Critically acclaimed author and Woodrow Wilson Fellow, Achy Obejas will introduce her newest book of short stories, the “Tower of the Antilles,” with a book signing to follow. These stories of contemporary Cuba explore how history and fate intrude on even the most ordinary of lives. Obejas’ visit is being held in conjunction with the Multicultural Center.

Conversation with Hip Hop Theatre Pedagogy Pioneers
Nov. 16, 6 p.m., Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum
Rickerby Hinds, Dreamscape creator, professor of playwriting in the Department of Theater Film & Digital Production at the University of California, Riverside and the only tenured Hip-Hop theater playwriting professor in the country will join Kashi Johnson, an accomplished actress, director and Professor of Theatre at Lehigh University, in a conversation about hip hop theatre. The event will be moderated by Sharrell Luckett, assistant professor of theatre.

Performance of “Dreamscape” and Talk Back
Nov. 17, 2:30 p.m., Baker Theatre
Created by Rickerby Hinds, “Dreamscape” is a riveting hip hop theatre play that is loosely based on the true story of a young woman who was shot to death by officers while sitting in her car unconscious. The play is central to conversations surrounding situations like Ferguson, as it explores policing and surveillance and the devastating effects this phenomenon has had on communities of color. This event was co-organized by theatre & dance and Sharrell Luckett, assistant professor of theatre.

In addition to the Center for Ethics, the 11/16-17 events are co-sponsored by Muhlenberg’s Department of Theatre & Dance, Lehigh University’s Africana Studies Program, the National Endowment for the Humanities, Lehigh University’s Department of Theatre, Lehigh University’s Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies Program and Lectures & Forums. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this (program) do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Through thematic lectures and events, the Center for Ethics serves the teaching and study of the liberal arts at Muhlenberg College by providing opportunities for intensive conversation and thinking about the ethical dimensions of contemporary philosophical, political, economic, social, cultural, and scientific issues. In service to its mission, the Center for Ethics hosts special events and programs, provides faculty development opportunities, and provides support for student programming. The Center for Ethics and thematic programs are directed by full-time faculty members.

Chris Sistare, professor of philosophy and co-director of philosophy and political thought, serves as director; Maura Finkelstein, assistant professor of anthropology, and Laura Taub-Pervizpour, associate dean for digital learning and professor of media & communication, serve as program directors.

During the spring 2018 semester, the Center for Ethics will continue to explore the theme of Troubling Truth. Confirmed events for spring 2018 include a Feb. 1 visit by Sa'ed Atshan, an expert on peace and justice studies and social movements in the Middle East; a Feb. 22 visit by filmmaker, educator and social justice advocate Chinonye Chukwu; and a March 27 visit by Elaine McMillion, filmmaker of “Hollow,” an interactive documentary that examines the future of rural America through the eyes and voices of Appalachians. More spring events will be confirmed as the academic year progresses.