Contemporary theologist to speak at Bates

Diana L. Eck, award-winning author of Encountering God: A Spiritual Journey from Bozeman to Banaras, will deliver a lecture titled Multireligious America: New Arguments, New Opportunities, at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 11, in Chase Hall Lounge, 56 Campus Ave. The public is invited to the 1997-1998 Rayborn Lindley Zerby Lecture in Contemporary Religious Thought and admission is free.

Eck won the 1994 Melcher Book Award and the 1995 Louisville Grawemeyer Book Award for Encountering God (Beacon Press, 1993), in which she examines religious diversity and proposes a vision of Christianity that is deeply engaged with people of other faiths. She is a member of the international presidium of the World Conference on Religion and Peace and has worked closely with the World Council of Churches to improve interreligious relations and dialogue. In 1995, she was awarded the Henry Luce III Fellowship in Theology for her work on the book Multireligious America: New Challenges for American Pluralism.

Eck, professor of comparative religion and Indian studies and director of the Pluralism Project at Harvard University, has documented the growing presence of the Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, Sikh, Jain and Zoroastrian communities in the United States. Her research has been published on an interactive, multimedia CD-ROM titled, On Common Ground: World Religions in America.

Eck received a bachelor’s degree in religion from Smith College, a master’s degree in South Asian history from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London and a doctoral degree in the comparative study of religion from Harvard.

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