We’re kicking off the fall semester with the resurgence of the ar·ti·facts series, in which faculty showcase an item from his or her office that bears some significance or importance to the professor and his/her role in the department. This season starts off with Dr. Nathan Loewen and a bit of family history…
Stay tuned for more upcoming videos in this series!
Our one credit hour course–REL 360–returns for the fall semester with the showing of Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai. This 1999 crime/action film follows “Ghost Dog”, a hit-man for the mafia who models his life by the code of the samurai. When one of his missions goes awry, causing him to leave a witness alive, Ghost Dog himself becomes a target of the mafia.
The screening is open to everyone!
(Even if you’re not in the class!)
WHAT? REL 360 is a one-credit course designed to show four films throughout the semester that will provoke discussion about what exactly takes place when the humanities and popular culture collide.
WHEN? Thursday, August 25 @ 6:00 pm
WHERE? 235 Lloyd Hall
WHY? To promote intriguing discussions outside of a typical lecture-setting. It’s a free film and a fun way to spend a Thursday afternoon.
WHAT ELSE? Anyone can attend! If you decide you like the class, you can email Professor Bagger (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information on the course, or visit the REL website.
It’s a new academic year so, yes, we have some new posters going up around Manly Hall — one being the new and improved faculty display case.
Located between the offices of Dr. Jacobs and Dr. Touna, this new poster reveals, for the first time ever, some fun facts that you probably didn’t know about your professors.
Our challenge to you? Match the little-known facts with the correct professor. Get the scorecard (print the JPEG by clicking the image above), then complete it and submit it in the box in REL’s main office for a chance to win a “major prize.” (While we ourselves may not know what this prize is, we promise you won’t want to miss out.)
Submit your entries to the main office by noon on August 31 and, from among the correct submissions, we’ll draw for a winner.
The Department of Religious Studies is thrilled to welcome you back to the start of another eventful academic year! We’re ushering in the new semester with a bit of a blast to the past as the Department celebrates fifty years of studying religion in culture. Check out the video to see just how much things have changed around Manly Hall.
As I sit here making the Spring 2017 class schedule for our department I recall the many times that I’ve heard academics lament being involved in administration. (That they equally complain about no longer being much involved in the governance of their institutions is an irony too rich to overlook.) “My condolences” is the witty reply many offer when learning that a colleague has fallen on the dagger (yes, that’s how it is portrayed) of becoming a department chair, coupled with such profuse congratulations at news of one stepping down as to make you think that it was equivalent to having your wrongful conviction overturned. Continue reading →
A young Brazilian migrant woman, Leila, runs a small make-up salon in her apartment in Toyota City, Japan. Most of her clients are, like herself, Brazilians of Japanese descent who have return migrated to the land of their ancestors. Her small salon is also a social hub of evangelical women in the local Brazilian migrant community who come in for good make-up and conversations. In this intimate space, Leila, her fellow migrants, and the filmmaker speak about and act out their complex identities.
Shot almost entirely in one room, the film captures migrants’ sense of identity and belonging by witnessing the interactions between Leila, the filmmaker, her family and friends, and the clients. What defines being Japanese, Brazilian, or Japanese-Brazilian? How does generational identity shape transnational belonging? How can one rely on God in the face of ethnic discrimination and social alienation? The scenes and dialogues speak to these issues that migrants constantly grapple with.
The film will be screened at the festival in Minneapolis, MN this November. Congratulations, Prof. Ikeuchi!
I’ve noticed an interesting reaction online to the news that Trump may have become born-again Christian — at least as reported recently in an interview with the noted US evangelical leader James Dobson.
The reaction concerns either how social actors like Dobson have stooped to a new low by so crassly using faith for political purposes (and thereby trying to make Trump more palatable to a segment of voters) or how this signals the final demise of the so-called Christian Right and any religious relevance it might have once had. Continue reading →
When I heard Donald Trump’s speech on Monday I realized that Trump’s rhetoric presents the scholar of religion with a crossroads. Scholars of religion have to make a decision about how to engage Trumpism.