Academic Lectures and Discussions

Jean Vanier

Jean Vanier: The Broken and the Oppressed

May 7, 2019

On November 6, 1988, the Catholic philosopher, theologian, and humanitarian Jean Vanier delivered Harvard Divinity School’s inaugural Harold M. Wit Lecture on Living a Spiritual Life in a Contemporary Age. His topic for the first of two talks was “The Broken and the Oppressed.”

Vanier’s lectures became the basis for one of his best loved books, From Brokenness to Community. Following are some excerpts from his address, reprinted from the Harvard Gazette.... Read more about Jean Vanier: The Broken and the Oppressed

susan howe

Video: Concordance: An Evening with Susan Howe

April 24, 2019

Award-winning American poet Susan Howe visited Harvard Divinity School on April 24 to speak about the binding together of freedom and law, spontaneity and habit, as occasions for awakening a reader to the exaltation of spirit in process. Crossing the guarded borders between image and word, individual and community, history and the present, poetry provides an opening to the transcendent order that chance makes possible.... Read more about Video: Concordance: An Evening with Susan Howe

livedreligion_sun

Video: Lived Religion and Spirituality in 2019

April 23, 2019

How is our lived experience of religion and spirituality changing? Where are the boundaries of religion being tested and transformed? How will scholars and practitioners define and understand religion in the future?
A multi-generational panel of scholars and practitioners at HDS explored the shifting structures of religious practice and identity, and shared insights about the emerging landscape of spiritual community.... Read more about Video: Lived Religion and Spirituality in 2019

margarita mora

Video: Indigenous Guardianship, Nature, and Peace

April 11, 2019

This monthly public series, convened by Dean David N. Hempton of HDS, brings together a cross-disciplinary RPP Working Group of faculty, experts, students, and alumni from across Harvard University and the local area to explore topics and cases in religions and the practice of peace. This meeting concerned indigenous guardianship and culture with intersections of nature and peace.... Read more about Video: Indigenous Guardianship, Nature, and Peace

Nainoa Thompson, President of the Polynesian Voyaging Society and a Pwo navigator, shared his views on climate change from the perspective of indigenous peoples at the Divinity School.

Putting ‘the Language of the Earth on the Agenda’

April 8, 2019
Climate change may finally be making headlines, but it is far from news. Addressing an overflow crowd at “The Land and the Waters Are Speaking: Indigenous Views on Climate Change” at Andover Hall on April 4, Angaangaq Angakkorsuaq, an Eskimo Kalaallit elder and storyteller, recalled hearing of the first warning signs back in 1963.
Nainoa Thompson

Video: The Land and the Waters are Speaking: Indigenous Views on Climate Change

April 4, 2019

The ongoing destruction of Earth’s natural systems is the result of decisions, made daily, by billions of people. These decisions are voluntary and involuntary at once, collective and personal. Two indigenous leaders—Nainoa Thompson and Angaangaq Angakkorsuaq (Uncle)—have both been identified by their communities as messengers who will guide us through climate challenges as they reflect on their traditions and spiritual practices.... Read more about Video: The Land and the Waters are Speaking: Indigenous Views on Climate Change

Botanical illustration

Video: All One Stuff: Emerson's Materialism

April 3, 2019

This talk contradicts the longstanding reading of Emerson as invested in idealism and instead charts his obsession with matter both organic and inorganic, organized and unorganized. By attending to his interest in sciences of life, Branka Arsić reconstructs the geological and botanical theories that led him to formulate a genuinely vitalist ontology; and by outlining his vitalism... Read more about Video: All One Stuff: Emerson's Materialism

parsitau

Video: The Kingdom of Holy Women: Pentecostalism, Sex and Women’s Bodies in an African Church

April 3, 2019

Damaris S. Parsitau, 2018-19 WSRP Visiting Associate Professor, delivers the lecture “The Kingdom of Holy Women: Pentecostalism, Sex and Women’s Bodies in an African Church,” which is based on five years of ethnographic research carried out at the Ministry of Repentance and Holiness, a new and controversial Pentecostal church based in Kenya.... Read more about Video: The Kingdom of Holy Women: Pentecostalism, Sex and Women’s Bodies in an African Church

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