University of Washington

Comparative Religion

Thomson Hall Room 433
(206) 543-4835

Comparative Religion

Archived News

June 2009
Islamic Law Workshop: Judicial Interpretation of Shari’a in Modern Muslim. Sponsors: The Carnegie Corporation of New York, The UWLS Foundation: Ted Stein Memorial Fund. The Center for Global Studies, Middle East Center, South Asia Center, South East Asia Center, The Comparative Religion Program, Asian Law Center, National University of Singapore: Asia Research Institute, Luce Foundation: Henry R. Luce Initiative on Religion and International Affairs
MAY 10, 2009
The Ernest Becker Foundation presents “A day-long Symposium on Technology, Distraction, and Immortality” at The University of Washington, Mary Gates Hall Room 241. Registration @ 9 AM; Program starts @ 9:30 AM. For cost and information: (206) 232-2994. The symposium will feature six speakers:
• Hilarie Cash, a psychotherapist specializing in video game and Internet addictions
• Sheldon Solomon, an experimental existential social psychologist at Skidmore
• Marcel O'Gorman, a media theorist at the University of Waterloo
• Jason Hawreliak, a PhD candidate at the University of Waterloo
• David Levy, a computer scientist at the University of Washington
• Daniel Liechty, a social work professor and Becker scholar with doctorates in both religion and philosophy

MAY 7, 2009
Walter Rusell Mead, Henry A. Kissinger Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy, Council on Foreign Relations and author of "God and Gold: Britain, America, and the Making of the Modern World", presents the Luce Symposium lecture, "After Fukuyama and Huntington: Prospects for American Power". Kane Hall 220 @ 7:30 PM. To hear a live interview with Mr. Mead on the topic of Religion and Foreign Policy please go the link:

MAY 6, 7, 8, 2009
The Luce Symposium in Global Religions and Human Security
Co-sponsors: the Comparative Religion Program and The Center for Global Studies.

MAY 6, 2009
Luce Public Lecture
“Pakistani Attitudes Towards Militancy In and Beyond Pakistan”
Kane 220@ 7:30 PM
Prof. Christine Fair, Senior Political Scientist at the RAND Corporation. Fair earned a B.S. in Biological Chemistry in 1991, an M.A. from the Harris School of Public Policy as well as an M.A in South Asian Languages and Civilizations in 1997. In 2004, she received a PhD in South Asian Languages and Civilizations. She has extensive experience in the areas of military manpower as well as issues pertaining to women and children. She is fluent in Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, and Persian. Much of her research concerns security competition between India and Pakistan, analyses of the causes of terrorism, and U.S. strategic relations with India and Pakistan. She has conducted an examination of political Islam and its recent developments in Pakistan and Iran; and a comparative study of urban terrorism and state responses in Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and India.

APRIL 28, 2009
Lunch and Launch: Christian Novetzke’s new book “Religion and Public Memory."
12:30, Thomson Hall 317. Please join the Comparative Religion Program and Center for Global Studies as we celebrate Christian Lee Novetzke's new book which vividly illustrates how religious communities in India preserve their pasts and, in turn, create their own historical narratives. Please RSVP if you plan to attend by April 22, 2009 to Christian Lee Novetzke is assistant professor at the University of Washington's Jackson School of International Studies in the South Asia Program and Comparative Religion Program. For review: Chronicle of Higher Education (Dec. 12, 2008)

APRIL 8, 2009
Former UW Comparative Religion graduate student, Lucas John Mix, speaks about his book, "Life in Space: Astrobiology for Everyone" , Elliott Bay Book Company, 7:30 PM
For more: And the review in the Seattle Times: Details on the bookstore at Mix received his PhD in biology from Harvard and now teaches courses on science and religion while working as a priest in the Episcopal Church.

FEB. 17, 2009
History Lecture Series: The Vatican in the 20th Century: 2005 to the Present—Benedict XVI Kane Hall Room 130 @ 7 PM, UW Seattle Campus Tickets required. Online RSVP Phone RSVP 1-800-AUW-ALUM or (206) 543-0540

FEB. 3, 2009
"Has Biblical Research Killed the Bible?" Kane Hall, Room 120, UW Seattle campus @ 6:30 PMProf. James Kugel, Director, Institute for the History of the Jewish Bible, Bar Ilan, Israel

FEB. 3, 2009
History Lecture Series: The Vatican in the 20th Century: 1958-1978—John XXIII and Paul VI Kane Hall Room 130 @ 7 PM, UW Seattle Campus Tickets required. Online RSVP Phone RSVP 1-800-AUW-ALUM or (206) 543-0540
Host(s) UW Alumni Association and the College of Arts & Sciences

JAN. 27, 2009
History Lecture Series: "The Vatican in the 20th Century: 1939-1958—Pius XII", Kane Hall Room 130 @ 7 PM UW Seattle Campus Tickets required. Online RSVP Phone RSVP 1-800-AUW-ALUM or (206) 543-0540\ Host(s) The UW Alumni Association and the UW College of Arts & Sciences

JAN. 24, 2009
Prof. Anthony Gill (Political Science Dept., UW) "Contemporary Threats to Religious Liberty in the U.S." (Luce Lecture) Kane 220 @ 7:30 PM Co-sponsored by the Center for Global Studies. The First Amendment of the US Constitution declares that "Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." While much of the debate over religious freedom has focused on whether prayer in school or Christmas trees on city hall lawns constitute "establishment," governments have increasingly used property rights regulations and zoning laws to inhibit the construction and expansion of houses of worship. Professor Gill examines why this trend has increased in recent years. His talk will situate the issue in historical and cross-national perspective. Sponsors: Comparative Religion Program and The Center for Global Studies. Contact information. 206 543 4835.

JAN. 20, 2009
"Islam in Europe: Integration and Radicalization, Two Faces of the Same Coin?"
Henry Art Gallery Auditorium @ 2:30 - 3:45 PM Prof. Olivier Roy, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, French National Centre for Scientific Research. Co-sponsors: The Center for West European Studies Politics and Society Colloquium, the Middle East Center and the Comparative Religion Program. Olivier Roy is a political scientist and scholar of Persian language and civilization. During 2008-09, he will be a Visiting Professor at UC Berkeley’s Political Science Department. Professor Roy was a consultant to UNOCA (United Nations Office of the Coordinator for Afghanistan) in 1988; in the same year he organized and accompanied a special UN team to Afghanistan. In 1993, he was special envoy for the OSCE in Tajikistan and in the following year


DEC. 4, 2008
Religions as Promoters of Human Rights and Peace: Panel Discussion
Rabbi David Rosen, International Director of Interreligious Affairs, American Jewish Committee; Imam Yahya Hendi, Georgetown University, Clergy Beyond Borders, Founder and Secretary General and Imams for Human rights and dialogue, Chairman; Professor James Perkinson, Oakland University (Michigan); Moderators: Prof. Gad Barzilai, JSIS; LSJ; Chair, Jewish Studies; Prof. James Wellman, JSIS; Chair, Comparative Religion. Sponsors: Greater Seattle Chapter of the American Jewish Committee, the UW Comparative Religion Program the Center for Global Studies of the Jackson School of International Studies, the Henry M. Luce Foundation, and Hillel UW.

(Co-sponsors - Center for Global Studies, Founders Endowed Lectures in religion and Contemporary Life, Departments of History, Middle East Studies, Near Eastern Languages and Civilization, UW Bookstore, and Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies)

OCT. 9, 2008
Prof. David Domke, UW, School of Communications, “Religious Politics in America: Why the 2008 Presidential Election May Change Everything for Everyone.”

OCT. 27, 2008
Prof. Vali Nasr, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, “Shi’I Politics in the Middle East.”

OCT. 28, 2008
Prof. Hubert Locke, Evans School of Public Affairs, UW, “A Nation Within: Black Religion, the Black Church, and the National Election.”

OCT. 31, 2008
Prof. Juan Cole, University of Michigan, “Iraq and the US Presidential Election”

APRIL 28, 2008
Prof. Ian Harris, Professor Buddhist Studies, Davison of Religion and Philosophy, University of Cumbria, UK, “Buddhism under Pol Pot”. Co-sponsored with Southeast Asia Center, JSIS

APRIL 10, 2008
Prof. A.R. Norton, Boston University, “The Shi’I Crescent? Discordant Notes from the Field”

APRIL 8, 2008
Prof. Martin Putna, Charles University, Czechoslovakia, "Czech Catholicism and American Catholicism: A Comparison of their Social, Cultural, and Political Situation and Impact". Co-sponsored with Departments of History and Slavic Languages and Literature

FEB. 7, 2008
Prof. Martin Riesebrodt, University of Chicago,” Globalization, Religion, and the ‘Clash of Civilizations’”. Co-sponsored with Departments of Sociology, Center for Global Studies.

JAN.14, 2008
"Online Buddhist Community, Authority and Identity: a case study on how the process of spiritualizing technology impact religious identity and authority in a Buddhist Web forum." Mary Gates Hall 241 @ 4 PMLecturer Laura Busch (UW Dept. of Communications) Center for Information and Society. First lecture in a series. Format includes presentation by a UW researcher accompanied by two panel members from other disciplines. This study analyzes the Buddhist message forum E-sangha, to determine how this forum’s founder and moderators ‘spiritualized the Internet’. This study demonstrates how narratives of a religious community provide Web producers and forum moderators an opportunity to frame Web environments as sacred community spaces thus determining who takes part in the community.

Program Coordinator, Loryn Paxton
Thomson Hall, room 433
Seattle, WA 98195
(206) 543-4835

Graduate Advising, Paula Milligan
(206) 543-6001

Student Advising, Linda Iltis
Transfer credits from another university to UW, inquire about learning abroad programs etc
(206) 543-6001