Bill Clohesy, professor of philosophy, will present “’We the People’: Trust in Public Discourse.” Freedom of religion and secular government are inseparable in the American republic. This talk explores the Constitution’s secular promise of respect for both politics and religion—if we choose to accept it. Today, numerous opponents would undo both secular republican government and respect for religious diversity. Our greatest defense is still to practice politics as the exchange of opinion upon which all true government rests. For more information, contact Martha Reineke at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Philosophy and Religion
Cara Burnidge, assistant professor of religion, will present “Islam in Iowa: An American Story.” This lecture will tell the story of Islam in America, giving special attention to Islam in Iowa. Like many native and naturalized citizens, Muslims around the world viewed the United States as a place of opportunity and freedom from religious persecution. Iowa, in particular, provided such opportunities for Muslim immigrants, which is why it is home to the oldest mosque in the United States, the Mother Mosque of America in Cedar Rapids. For more information, contact Martha Reineke at email@example.com.
John Burnight, assistant professor of religion, will present "Abraham, Moses and Jesus: The Heritage of the Bible in the Qu'ran." His presentation will examine a number of the Qur’anic passages discussing these and several other biblical figures, highlighting the important role that each plays in Islam. This is the first in a three-lecture series sponsored by the Department of Philosophy and World Religions on the topic "Islam and Iowa Politics." For more information, contact Martha Reineke at Reineke@uni.edu.
Nick Baima, a graduate from the Department of Philosophy and World Religions and who will receive a Ph.D. in philosophy from Washingnton University in St. Louis in May, will present, "Death, Love, and the Truth: Reflections From Plato's Phaedo." Following a suggestion by Plato in The Phaedo, Baima will argue that it is a constitutive feature of love that we not only believe positive things about our beloved, but that it is good that we do so, even if those things are not true in the strict sense of the term, "truth."
Abby Helgevold, department of philosophy and world religions, will present a lecture titled "Good Sex: It's About More Than Just Pleasure." Is bad sex better than no sex at all? Are all forms of "good" sex in fact "good?" This lecture will explore what it means to think ethically about our sexual lives by discussing the question, "what does it mean to have good sex?"
James Robinson and Abbylynn Helgevold will discuss ideas for integrating teaching about Islam into the teaching of Western Civilization and Global Humanities.
Jerry Soneson, philosophy and world religions, will discuss "Kierkegaard, The Great Granddaddy of Existentialism: What Makes Life Worth Living?" Soneson will seek to make sense of the complex work of this melancholy Dane, who contributed so much to philosophy, religion and psychology, by organizing his talk about Kierkegaard's central question: amid all our troubles, distress and despair, what makes life worth living?
Francis Degnin, associate professor of philosopy, will provide an overview of this summer's Supreme Court decision in Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby. Degnin will provide a discussion of the case and what the decision means for the future of relgious freedom, reproductive rights and other health issues in the United States.
Cara Burnidge, assistant professor of religion, will present "Does a President's Faith Shape Policy? Woodrow Wilson as a Case Study for Today." This lecture will examine how faith has and has not shaped a president’s domestic and international policies and reform; it will conclude by offering insights on how to think about religion in policy making today. The lecture is sponsored by the Department of Philosophy and World Religion and the Department of History.
Thomas Thangeraj, professor emeritus, Emory University, will present "Critical Studies of Religion Fosters Inter-Religious Understanding: An Academic Experiment in India." During the last 30 years, universities in India have established departments of religion which study religion from an academic point of view. This lecture will explore the extent to which this study might be promoting inter-religious understanding and harmony in India.