News & Events

  • On December 7, 2013, Professor Susannah Heschel gave the keynote address at Erudition and Commitment: A conference in honour of Angelika Neuwirth, held at the Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften in Berlin. The theme of her talk was "Islam and Jewish-German Self Understanding."

  • A group that includes an imam, a rabbi, and a minister plans to build a multi-faith prayer space atop the ruins of St. Peter’s Church in Berlin, but critics say the group is ignoring the site’s “horrific past,” The Atlantic writes.

    Noted German historian Manfred Gailus has brought attention to the site’s history, says the magazine, including the notoriously anti-Semitic pastor of the church during the 1940s, Walter Hoff, and his role in the Holocaust.

    Gailus’ academic...

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  • Research that some believe could lead to the creation of “designer babies” has raised a number of ethical issues, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has scheduled a hearing later this month to consider them, NPR reports.

    The research in question would make changes to some of the genetic material in a woman’s egg, and thereby, the scientists hope, prevent genetically transmitted diseases from being passed down through the generations, NPR reports.

    To address some of the...

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  • In a story about the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s March on Washington, The Washington Post takes a look at how recent events commemorating the 1963 march have evoked memories of the relations between African Americans and Jews, groups closely aligned in the early days of the civil rights movement.

    Dartmouth’s Susannah Heschel, who attended the 50th anniversary event on August 28, tells the ...

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  • In an opinion piece published by the Valley News, Professor Randall Balmer says the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington celebrates “the high-water mark of the civil rights movement” while pointing out how much remains to be done to banish discrimination and achieve racial equality.

    Balmer, chair of the Department of Religion and the Mandel Family Professor in the Arts & Sciences,...

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  • Pope Francis drew huge crowds during his recent visit to Brazil, and then made headlines for saying he had no right to judge homosexuals, a remark he made during an 80-minute press conference aboard the flight back to Rome.

    “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” Francis said, using the English word “gay” though speaking primarily in Italian. Photos taken on the papal airplane showed the pontiff looking relaxed as he added, “the tendency...

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  • It was while researching stories about the Buddha literally giving away his body parts to humans in need that Reiko Ohnuma began to think about motherhood. A mother herself, Ohnuma, associate professor of religion at Dartmouth since 1999, says the stories of extreme self-sacrifice struck her as “very similar to the intensely physical nature of mothering.”

    In fact, she characterizes motherhood as the “most appropriate...

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  • Susannah Heschel, the Eli Black Professor of Jewish Studies in Dartmouth’s Department of Religion, and Cleopatra Mathis, the Frederick Sessions Beebe ’35 Professor of the Art of Writing in the Department of English, are among 175 scholars in the United States and Canada who have been awarded 2013 fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.

    The Guggenheims are frequently characterized as “midcareer” awards. ...

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  • Professor Christopher MacEvitt, an associate professor of religion, is in Rome this week preparing for a spring course he is teaching on sacred cities. He was in St. Peter’s Square on March 17, 2013, to hear Pope Francis deliver a Sunday prayer and greeting from the balcony of the papal apartments and he sent to Dartmouth Now his impression of the day:

    “I attended today’s Angelus prayer at St. Peter’s, along with...

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  • Editor’s note: Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina was picked Wednesday, March 13, 2013, as the 266th pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church. The first non-European pope in 1,200 years, he will be called Pope Francis.

    In the days before the Conclave entered the Sistine Chapel to choose a new pope to succeed Benedict XVI, the first pope to resign his office in nearly 600 years, Dartmouth’s Randall Balmer, the Mandel Family Professor of Arts and Sciences and chair of...

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