We Can’t Leave Tesla Alone

Montenegrin monument to Nikola Tesla

Madeleine Lewis graduated from UA in 2017 with degrees Religious Studies and Applied Mathematics. She is now teaching English and Computer Science in Montenegro with the Fulbright Program.

This past September, Elon Musk tweeted, “Finally, we will do Nikola Tesla proud by having his cars in his countries of origin!” This claim about beginnings, coupled with the fact that I have lived in what some people assert to be Tesla’s singular country of origin for over a year, sparked my curiosity as a scholar of religion.

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But First a Word From Our Students…


Madeleine Lewis is a senior studying mathematics and religion at the University of Alabama. They spend their time researching conspiracy theories, making tacos in a tiny kitchen, and inciting resistance in their peers, among other things.

We’re asking some current REL students to finish a few sentences for us….

The first REL course I took at UA was: Religion and Literature: Authority, Authorship, and Canon with Dr. Simmons.

One of the most curious things I’ve learned so far in one of my REL courses is: the context leading up to Jim Jones’s mass murder at Jonestown and the group dynamics of The Peoples’ Temple.

A practical skill I’ve learned in REL is: how to form lasting and friendly relationships with my professors.

The coolest thing about the second floor of Manly Hall is: the little metal trough that McCutcheon fills with peanuts and uses to feed squirrels on the balcony. I call it Basil’s buffet.

One thing not a lot of people know about REL is: how aptly theories of religion apply to popular culture and politics.

Make your own slogan: How did Donald Trump win the 2016 election? Study religion and find out.