Cosmos

cosmos

By Chris Beacham
Chris Beacham is a junior undergraduate majoring in Psychology and minoring in Religious Studies. He is from New Orleans, and enjoys filmmaking and reading eastern philosophy.

The television show “Cosmos” premiered on Fox channels Sunday night, hosted by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. It was a sequel to the 1980’s miniseries “Cosmos: A Personal Voyage” hosted by Carl Sagan. I watched both shows that day and found some interesting information contained within, but also some interesting representations. The show depicts itself as a stream of facts and knowledge about the universe, and much of the content in these shows is true by scientific standards. However, I was surprised at how each show takes this information and puts it together to create a particular narrative. Continue reading

Approaching the Bible

256px-Neil_deGrasse_Tyson_at_Howard_University_September_28,_2010By Max Hartley
Max Hartley is a senior studying Anthropology and Asian Studies, with a focus on East Asia. She is particularly fascinated by mythology, religion, and the influence of folk religions in the modern age, as well as shamanism in its many forms, particularly as it is practiced in Korea.

This article from the Huffington Post, notes prominent physicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson stating “don’t try to use the Bible as a textbook.” This small statement could mean a lot in its implications. Continue reading

On the Shoulders of Others

Tyson

Challenging the insularity of academic research is important for all fields, including the human sciences, as Kelly Baker writes in her recent post about Neil deGrasse Tyson. This departmental blog, and several others where faculty in the department publish (Culture on the Edge, Huffington Post, Bulletin for the Study of Religion, Thinking Out Loud . . .), are an aspect of this process of making scholarship accessible to a wider audience, as these sites attract non-academic readers, no matter how widely each author conceives the audience. Of course, helping non-specialists engage difficult concepts is what professors do continually in the classroom. Continue reading