Expand AU Menu

Philosophy & Religion | Religious Studies Events

2014-2015 EVENTS

Aspiring to Ramarajya? The Epics and Good Governance in India

a lecture by Naina Dayal, Fulbright-Nehru Visiting Scholar, Department of South and Southeast Studies, UC Berkeley

Abstract: The Sanskrit Ramayana of Valmiki describes Rama's reign as a utopian period. So righteous is Rama's rule supposed to have been that Ramarajya became and continues to be synonymous with moral governance. But what exactly does the ideal world of Ramarajya denote in Valmiki's Ramayana? What does it mean in our times, when, for instance, the anti-corruption leader Anna Hazare's 'model' village is hailed as Ramarajya?  

April 7, 2015 at 1pm, Butler Board Room

Texts and Traditions IV: Moses and the Monotheists

a panel discussion with:

Rabbi Leila Gal Berner, Ph.D. - Dean of Students, ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal Ordination Program; Rabbi, Kol Ami: The Northern Virginia Reconstructionist Community

Dr. Martyn Oliver - Professorial Lecturer, Department of Philosophy and Religion, American University

Rev. Mark Schaefer - United Methodist Chaplain Adjunct Instructor, Department of Philosophy and Religion

Wednesday, October 29, 2014
3:30pm in the Butler Boardroom
(see AU Maps)

Co-sponsored by the Jewish Studies Program, the Arab World Studies Program, and the Office of the United Methodist Chaplain

2013-2014 EVENTS

The Role of Religion in Global Social Protest

a panel discussion

Wednesday, December 4, 2013
2:00pm in the Battelle Atrium


Texts and Traditions: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Visions of Afterlife

a panel discussion with

Pamela Nadell, Chair, Department of History; Director, Jewish Studies
Martyn Oliver, Professorial Lecturer, Department of Philosophy and Religion
Mark Schaefer, United Methodist Chaplain ; Adjunct Instructor, Department of Philosophy and Religion

Wednesday, October 16, 2013
3:30 p.m. in Kay Spiritual Lounge
(see AU Maps)

Co-sponsored with the Jewish Studies Program and the Office of the United Methodist Chaplain.


2012-2013 EVENTS

Texts and Traditions: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Visions of Creation

a panel discussion with

Rabbi Leila Gal Berner
Dr. Martyn Oliver
Rev. Mark Schaefer
Department of Philosophy and Religion
American University

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
3:30 p.m. in Mary Graydon Center 200
(see AU Maps)

Co-sponsored with the Department of History, Arab Studies, Jewish Studies, Office of the University Chaplain, Office of the United Methodist Chaplain, and the Religious Studies Club.



2011-2012 EVENTS

Wandering Muhammad: Islam's Home in the Academy

a lecture by
Dr. Martyn Oliver
Professorial Lecturer
Department of Philosophy and Religion
American University

Wednesday, February 29, 2012
11:30 a.m.
Battelle Atrium
(see AU Maps)


March 29, 2012
11:30 a.m.
Butler Boardroom


Judging Abraham:
Faith, Coercion, and Autonomy in the Public Sphere

a lecture by
Dr. Derek Malone-France
Associate Professor of Religion
Associate Professor of Writing
Interim Executive Director of the University Writing Program
The George Washington University

Tuesday, January 24, 2012
8:00 p.m.
Butler Boardroom

Derek Malone-France is Associate Professor of Religion, Associate Professor of Writing, and Interim Executive Director of the University Writing Program at The George Washington University, where he teaches courses on philosophy of religion, metaphysics and epistemology, political and legal philosophy, political and religious rhetoric, and human rights theory and practice.

Dr. Malone-France received his bachelor's degree in Philosophy from Wofford College in 1995 and his doctorate in Philosophy of Religion and Theology in 2001 from the School of Religion at Claremont Graduate University. Prior to arriving at George Washington University, he spent four years as a Mellon Writing Fellow and an Instructor in the Philosophy and Political Science Departments at Duke University. He also served for two years as Associate Director of Duke's Center for Teaching, Learning, and Writing.

His talk was based on his latest book, Faith, Fallibility, and the Virtue of Anxiety: An Essay in Religion and Political Liberalism, which is being published in late-spring 2012 by Palgrave MacMillan. His two-volume, edited anthology, Political Dissent—A Global Reader, Vol. 1: Ancient to Early Modern Sources & Vol. 2: Modern Sources, comes out December 2011, from Lexington Books/Rowman and Littlefield. His first book, Deep Empiricism: Kant, Whitehead, and the Necessity of Philosophical Theism, was also published by Lexington in 2007. He has also published numerous articles on topics ranging from propositional logic to the politics of the International Criminal Court.


An Islamic Perspective on American Patriotism

a lecture by
Imam Talib Shareef

Masjid Muhammad
Retired Chief Master Sergeant, United States Air Force

Thursday, November 17, 2011
2:35 p.m.
Mary Graydon Center 200

Imam Shareef is the leader of Washington DC's oldest mosque and, in his 30 year military career, played a formative role in paving the way for Muslim service men and women. He spoke about his career and the evolution of African American Islam.

Imam Talib Shareef, Retired Chief Master Sergeant, United States Air Force, is the 4th Resident Imam for the historic Masjid Muhammad in Washington, DC. He served as Imam in five US cities, as Islamic Faith Group Leader at seven military locations around the world, and as Convener for the Georgia State Association of Imams. He is a student of the late Imam W.D. Mohammed, Muslim-American Spokesman for humanity.

Imam Shareef holds a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from American Intercontinental University and a Diploma from the Institute of Islamic and Arabic Sciences in America; and is a graduate of the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center in Arabic and Middle East studies. Imam Shareef co-founded both the Muslim Military Members (MMM) organization (instrumental in opening the door for the first military Islamic Chaplain) and the Muslim-American Military Association (MAMA). He was a Lead organizer and participant in the first US Muslim military group Hajj program in 1992, and Chief Advisor of the Muslim American Veterans Association (MAVA). As Senior Advisor, he facilitated a home for the first American Islamic Heritage Museum in the Nation's Capitol. He has also been a member of the Interfaith Council of Metropolitan Washington (IFCMW) and Director of the New Africa Business Association (NABA). Imam Shareef was appointed to the District of Columbia Mayor's Interfaith Advisory Council, selected to sit with and was recognized by President Obama at the 2011 White House Iftar, and was keynote Speaker for the 2011 Pentagon Iftar (filled past capacity crowd) and for the historic first Iftar hosted by the Israeli Ambassador to America. He has presented lectures and taught at American University and Wesley Theological Seminary, and was opening speaker for one of the nation's first memorials honoring human rights activist Coretta Scott King at Sojourner Douglass College in Maryland.

Iman Shareef and his wife, Tahirah, have three children and six grandchildren, and are custodial parents of three other children. They also have been foster parents to several others.


Sacrifice, Surrender and Symbolism: Three Faiths Interpret
Abraham's Binding of His Son

Wedneday, November 9, 2011
3:30 p.m.
Mary Graydon Center 247

Rabbi Leila Berner, Dr. Martyn Oliver, and Rev. Mark Schaefer conducted the workshop. Through a comparative reading of the Binding of Isaac/Ishmael, workshop participants explored the following questions: What are the commonalities, differences, and reflections of Jewish, Muslim, and Christian theologies, teachings, cultures? How do our respective clergy "deal" with the texts? As inspiring? Disturbing? Challenging? Didactic? Ethically instructive? Ethically problematic?

Cosponsored by the Department of Philosophy and Religion, and the Jewish Studies Program


2010-2011 EVENTS

Hassidic Journeys into the Afterlife: A Jewish Mystical Approach to Death, Dying and the Life beyond the Physical Realm

a lecture by Leila Berner
Scholar-in-Residence, American University
Thursday, October 21, 2010, 3:00-5:00
Mary Graydon Center 200 


2008-2009 EVENTS

Two Faiths, Two Readings: How Jews and Christians Read the Bible

a workshop by Leila Berner, Scholar-in-Residence, and
Mark Schaefer, United Methodist Chaplain
American University
November 6, 2008


How Jews Read the Bible:
Interpreting and Living a Sacred Text

a lecture by Leila Berner
Scholar-in-Residence, American University
November 3, 2008


2007-2008 EVENTS

Jews and Power: The Book of Esther in the Sixteenth Century

a lecture by Dr. Erica Brown
Department of Philosophy and Religion
American University
Tuesday,October 16, 2007

Co-sponsored with the Jewish Studies Program


2007-2008 EVENTS

Bringing Myth Back to the World:
The Modern History of Theorizing about Myth

a lecture by Robert Segal
Professor of Religious Studies
University of Aberdeen
Friday,November 17, 2006


2004-2005 EVENTS

A Book Reception for and a Slide Presentation 

by Dr. Charles S. J. White
Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Religion
American University
author of
A Catalogue of Vaisnava Literature:
On Microfilms in the Adyar Library,
The Bodleian Library, and the
American University Library

September 29, 2004