"Christianity in the Post-Secular University?"
Friday October 30, Saturday AM October 31, 2009
MSU Kellogg Center, East Lansing, Michigan
Keynote, John Schmalzbauer, Missouri State University
Panel Moderator, Timothy Larsen, Wheaton College
Panelists, Arthur Versluis, Michigan State University, Amy DeRogatis, Michigan State University, others.
The college campus has long been perceived as one of the most secular precincts of American society. The secularization storyline remains the dominant narrative for describing the place of religion in the American university.
Marginalized for the better part of a century, religion is making a comeback in American higher education. In a post-secular era, more and more scholars are challenging the boundary between faith and knowledge, acknowledging the importance of religion as a social phenomenon and a way of knowing.
This lecture will provide a guided tour of the range of movements that are reconnecting religion and knowledge across the disciplines. It will also assess the prospects for Christian scholarship (Catholic,evangelical, mainline Protestant, Orthodox, etc.) in the contemporary academy,
focusing on both opportunities and challenges. On the one hand, the return of religion signals a new openness to people of faith. On the other hand, the return of religion takes place in a multi-cultural,multi-ethnic, and multi-religious milieu. Far from a return to a mythical "Christian America," the post-secular university includes scholars from the full range of global religious traditions and those with no religious affiliation at all. In a post-secular era, it is imperative that Christian scholars learn to practice theirscholarship in a pluralistic environment.
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