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June 2022

Study of Religion: Commencement Toast 2022

June 11 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
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May 2022

Antisemitism in the Pagan World

May 18 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

What counts as antisemitism? Did antisemitism exist among Greeks and Romans? How far and how deep did hostility to Jews extend in the pagan and pre-Christian world? What impact did it have on Jewish experience in the period of the Second Temple? In short, was there a “Jewish problem” in Greco-Roman antiquity?   Co-sponsored by the Department of Classics, History Department, and the Alan D. Leve Center for Jewish Studies   Erich Gruen is Gladys Rehard Wood Professor of History…

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Wolakota kagapi: The Study of Peace Making on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation

May 17 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Unfortunately, the Center for the Study of Religion must postpone this event due to extenuating circumstances. We apologize for the inconvenience, and look forward to welcoming you at our next event.   The Oglala Lakota Peace Making Team, was instrumental in putting together a number of training sessions for community members to become Peace Makers. The tribe developed a Peace Making Room in the new court house. The Peace Making room is used for Peace Making for the community membership.…

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Losing Control of the gods: How Religion Slipped Out of the Hands of Men in the Early Roman Empire

May 12 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

The dignified and extravagant public rituals of Romans – ancestral institutions as the last generations of the Republic imagined them – definitively failed in the last century BCE. Future senatorial priests presided only over the cults of a city that was less and less a capital. In place of a narrative of early imperial religion that sets the worship of the emperors at its center, I shall argue for a systemic shift in the religious order, a disintegration of authority…

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The Ten Commandments: Who What When Where Why

May 11 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

For over two thousand years the Ten Commandments have been understood as the fundamental set of divine laws in the Hebrew Bible. Even for those who do not believe that Moses wrote the Pentateuch, the Ten Commandments have retained their place as especially ancient, and especially important in the religious and communal life of Israel. In this lecture, Joel Baden will explain why this is, essentially, all wrong – and how we should understand, and grapple with, the true origins…

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April 2022

Song of Songs, Time after Time

April 28 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

The Song of Songs has been subject to numerous and varying interpretive approaches since its emergence. Drawing from her recently published book, Perils of Wisdom: The Scriptural Solomon in Jewish Tradition, Dr. Keiter will focus on varying Jewish interpretive strategies toward the Song, highlighting the development of Jewish biblical exegesis and its impact on the King Solomon legend in Jewish thought.   Co-sponsored by the Alan D. Leve Center for Jewish Studies and its Bible and the Ancient World Seminar…

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Do Robots Have Souls? Intelligent Machines, Digital Humans, and the Future of Technology 

April 27 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

In this lecture, Sylvester A. Johnson interprets the work of Ibn Rushd (“Averroës”), the twelfth-century Islamic scholar of Andalusia who achieved renown as the ‘father’ of secularism, in order to elucidate Ibn Rushd’s theory of the intellect as a power of the soul. Johnson leverages Rushd’s distinction between sensing and knowing in order to examine contemporary, sensory-driven AI technology (particularly brain-computer-interface architectures) as a uniquely generative problem of interest for humanists and technical experts alike. Of central importance is the…

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A Conversation with Michael Schur

April 21 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Michael Schur is a television producer, writer, actor and author of How to be Perfect: The Correct Answer to Every Moral Questions. With Pamela Hieronymi, Professor at UCLA Department of Philosophy, this conversation with explore the role of religion in contemplating moral and ethical decision-making. HOW TO BE PERFECT: The Correct Answer to Every Moral Question sets out to do for moral philosophy what A Brief History of Time did for astrophysics. (But with jokes!) And by the time the book…

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Study of Religion: Spring Snack Social

April 13 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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February 2022

The Jewish Discovery of Islam Revisited

February 23 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

From the oldest European Christian engagements with the Qur’an in the Middle Ages through the advent of modern academic approaches to the Muslim scripture, scholars have frequently seen qur’anic narratives on the biblical prophets and related subjects as the result of formative Jewish influences on the Prophet Muhammad. This approach to the origins of Islam has become enshrined in modern Qur’anic Studies due to the groundbreaking research of Abraham Geiger in his 1833 work What Has Muhammad Borrowed from Judaism?…

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