First Things Magazine will hold a discussion of R.R. Reno’s new book, Resurrecting the Idea of a Christian Society, on September 20 in New York. (Last month, Center Director Mark Movsesian interviewed Reno about the book as part of our Conversations series). Here’s some information about the event, from the magazine:
Please join us for a book talk, along with a wine and cheese reception, with First Things editor R. R. Reno. In Resurrecting the Idea of a Christian Society, Reno argues that America needs a renewal of Christian ideals—ideals that encourage self-sacrifice, responsibility, and solidarity. Drawing on T.S. Eliot’s 1940 essay “The Idea of a Christian Society,” Reno shows how Christianity encourages “an abiding ambition for higher things” and a “moral vision” that can strengthen communities and transform America into a truly great nation.
Further information can be found here.
In November, Stanford University Press will release Confessions of the Shtetl: Converts from Judaism in Imperial Russia, 1817-1906 by Ellie R. Schainker (Emory University). The publisher’s description follows:
Over the course of the nineteenth century, some 84,500 Jews in imperial Russia converted to Christianity. Confessions of the Shtetl explores the day-to-day world of these people, including the social, geographic, religious, and economic links among converts, Christians, and Jews. The book narrates converts’ tales of love, desperation, and fear, tracing the uneasy contest between religious choice and collective Jewish identity in tsarist Russia. Rather than viewing the shtetl as the foundation myth for modern Jewish nationhood, this work reveals the shtetl’s history of conversions and communal engagement with converts, which ultimately yielded a cultural hybridity that both challenged and fueled visions of Jewish separatism.
Drawing on extensive research with conversion files in imperial Russian archives, in addition to the mass press, novels, and memoirs, Ellie R. Schainker offers a sociocultural history of religious toleration and Jewish life that sees baptism not as the fundamental departure from Jewishness or the Jewish community, but as a conversion that marked the start of a complicated experiment with new forms of identity and belonging. Ultimately, she argues that the Jewish encounter with imperial Russia did not revolve around coercion and ghettoization but was a genuinely religious drama with a diverse, attractive, and aggressive Christianity.
Pepperdine University School of Law’s Nootbaar Institute is soliciting papers for its upcoming conference, Religious Critiques of Law. The conference will be held on March 9-10, 2017. Here’s a description, from the conference organizers:
In his book, American Lawyers and Their Communities, Tom Shaffer envisions a downtown street. On one side of the street is a house of worship; on the other is a courthouse. According to Shaffer, law schools train lawyers to look at the religious congregation from the courthouse—that is to analyze the problems the religious congregation creates for the law. Shaffer contends that too often, law schools ignore the possibility that there might be a view of the courthouse from the house of worship.
Prophetic witness is discounted in law teaching. Our part of the academy, more than any other, has systematically discouraged and disapproved of invoking the religious tradition as important Read more
In November, Yale University Press will release From Christ to Confucius: German Missionaries, Chinese Christians, and the Globalization of Christianity, 1860-1950 by Albert Monshan Wu (American University of Paris). The publisher’s description follows:
A bold and original study of German missionaries in China, who catalyzed a revolution in thinking among European Christians about the nature of Christianity itself
In this accessibly written and empirically based study, Albert Wu documents how German missionaries—chastened by their failure to convert Chinese people to Christianity—reconsidered their attitudes toward Chinese culture and Confucianism. In time, their increased openness catalyzed a revolution in thinking among European Christians about the nature of Christianity itself. At a moment when Europe’s Christian population is falling behind those of South America and Africa, Wu’s provocative analysis sheds light on the roots of Christianity’s global shift.