The Gaede Institute co-sponsors a variety of faculty-organized lecture series: the Pascal Society Lectures, which engage questions of science and faith; the Erasmus Society Lectures, which bring to campus leading scholars in the humanities; two annual lectures organized by Westmont's chapter of the Phi Kappa Phi honors society; and special World Christianity, Gender Studies, and departmental lectures. Videos of recent events may be viewed below. For information about older lectures, please visit our archive. To add these events to your Google Calendar, follow this link, then click the small + icon in the bottom-right corner of the page.

 


Spring 2015 Calendar

Paul Lim
February 5, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

"Global Evangelicalism and Human Trafficking: Tyranny of the Urgent? "

Elaine Ecklund
February 9, 2015, 3:30 p.m.
"What Scientists Think About Faith and What People of Faith Think About Science and Why We Should Care"

Kurt Ver Beek
February 11, 2015, 11:30 a.m.
"What Would Justice Do? Lessons from Community Development in Honduras"

David McNaughton
February 11, 2015, 3:30 p.m.
"Humility: From Sacred Virtue to Secular Vice"

Felicia Song
March 3, 2015, 7:00 p.m.
"More than a Mommy Blogger: Re-Negotiating Identity in Motherhood and Social Media"

Brett Foster
March 5, 2015, 7:30 p.m.

"Brett Foster Reads"

Jodi Magness
March 12, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

"Ossuaries and the Burials of Jesus and James"


Jim Ault

March 26, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

"Christianity and Culture: African Christianity Rising--Stories from Ghana"

 

Marylesa Howard

April 10, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

"The Need for Mathematics, Science, and Engineering in Nuclear Security"

 

Helen Frowe
April 14, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

"Permissible Self-Defence"

 

Adam Harmer

April 17, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

"Is God the Soul of the World? Leibniz Against Three Forms of Pantheism"

 

(Download Calendar Flyer)

 

 

"Global Evangelicalism and Human Trafficking: Tyranny of the Urgent?"


Paul Lim

Professor of the History of Christianity

Vanderbilt Divinity School

 

Erasmus Society Lecture

Thursday, February 5, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Founders Room, Kerr Student Center

 

 

Evangelical Christians—globally considered—have become much more interested in and committed to stopping the gangrenous spread of human trafficking. This lecture will unpack the divergent strategies employed by evangelical "freedom fighters," offering a thicker narrative of evangelical involvement in this global pandemic of commodification of the human person. Themes of evangelical neo-colonialism, re-articulation of holistic mission, and the nature and extent of incarnational ministry will be explored in their Indian, Korean and American contexts.

 

 

 

What Scientists Think About Faith and What People of Faith Think About Science and Why We Should Care


Elaine Ecklund

Herbert S. Autrey Professor of Sociology

Rice University

 

Pascal Society Lecture

Monday, February 9, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Winter Hall 210

 

 

The supposed conflict between religion and science continues today to be a lynchpin of modern culture. But are all scientists really against religion? And are all Christians against science? Based on ten years of research on the religious beliefs of scientists and a recent comprehensive study of what religious people think about science, Elaine Howard Ecklund, Autrey Professor of Sociology at Rice University, will tell us what scientists think about faith, what people of faith think about science, and why we should care.

 

 

 

What Would Justice Do? Lessons from Community Development in Honduras


Kurt Ver Beek

Professor of Sociology

Director, Calvin Honduras Program

Calvin College

 

Discussing Development Lecture

Wednesday, February 11, 2015, 11:30 a.m.

Kerr Student Center Upper Lounge

Pizza and drinks provided

 

 

Kurt is one of six founding members of the Association for a More Just Society (AJS) in Honduras. AJS seeks to create a more just society, focusing on the poorest and most vulnerable sectors through the creation of more just legislation, by a more just application of current legislation, and by increasing the role of churches in promoting social justice. While working for Calvin College, Prof. Ver Beek has also carried out short-term consulting work with international development organizations, including World Vision and Tear Fund UK.

 

 

 

Humility: From Sacred Virtue to Secular Vice


mcnaughtonDavid McNaughton

Professor of Philosophy

Florida State University

 

Erasmus Society Lecture

Wednesday, February 11, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Hieronymus Lounge, Kerrwood Hall

 

Some character traits, such as benevolence or courage, seem to have a fixed place in our catalog of virtues. But others have something like a life cycle: they rise and fall in importance over time, or move beyond the domain of virtue altogether. Humility, once a centrally important virtue, is today the subject of much skepticism. What is humility good for? Does it entail merely wimpishness, or a distorted sense of modesty? Is there a way of rescuing it for a secular context, so that we can once again wholeheartedly endorse and admire it as one of the virtues?

 

 

 

More than a Mommy Blogger: Re-Negotiating Identity in Motherhood and Social Media


Felicia Song

Professor of Sociology

Westmont College

Wayne Iba and Deborah Dunn, responding

 

Paul C. Wilt Phi Kappa Phi Lecture

Tuesday, March 3, 2015, 7:00 p.m.

Hieronymus Lounge, Kerrwood Hall

 

 

In the past five years, a growing mom blogosphere has been changing the lives of contemporary mothers. While “mommy blogs” first rose to prominence as sources of social support and community, they have since evolved into a savvy industry. Seeking to re-construct their social identities and create a legitimate space of expanded public discourse, these women have used blogging and social media conferences as a means for achieving personal and collective empowerment. This lecture will explore how face-to-face social media conferences function as a key mechanism for creating solidarity and status for a largely online industry, and examine the double-edged nature of commercial empowerment for women and mothers seeking meaningful forms of cultural legitimacy.

 

 

 

Brett Foster Reads


Brett Foster

Professor of English

Wheaton College

 

Westmont Reading Series

Thursday, March 5, 2015, 7:30 p.m.

Hieronymus Lounge, Kerrwood Hall

 

 

Brett Foster is the author of two poetry collections, The Garbage Eater (Northwestern University Press, 2011) and Fall Run Road, which was awarded Finishing Line Press's Open Chapbook Prize. A new collection, Extravagent Rescues, is forthcoming in 2015. His writing has appeared in various journals, including Books & Culture, Boston Review, Hudson Review, IMAGE, Kenyon Review, Poetry Daily, Raritan, Shenandoah, Southwest Review, and Yale Review. He is also a Renaissance scholar, and speaks regularly at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. A former Stegner Fellow at Stanford University and recipient of a PEN American writing grant and the Willis Barnstone Translation Prize, he is a professor of creative writing and Renaissance literature at Wheaton College.

 

 

 

Ossuaries and the Burials of Jesus and James


magnessJodi Magness

Kenan Distinguished Professor in Early Judaism

UNC Chapel Hill

 

UCSB-Westmont Joint Lecture Series on the New Testament and Early Christianity

Thursday, March 12, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Porter Theater

 

In 2002, an ossuary inscribed "James son of Joseph brother of Jesus" surfaced in the hands of a private collector. A few years later, a Discovery Channel documentary and related book claimed that the tomb of Jesus and his family has been found in Jerusalem. In this slide-illustrated lecture, we examine the validity of these sensational claims in light of archaeological and historical evidence for ancient Jewish tombs and burial customs in Jerusalem, including the burials of Jesus and his brother James.

 

 

 

Christianity and Culture: African Christianity Rising


froweJim Ault

Filmmaker and PhD in sociology

 

Religious Studies Department Lecture

Thursday, March 26, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Winter Hall 106

 

Sociologist and award-winning documentary filmmaker and author James Ault will show pieces and discuss lessons from his recently released African Christianity Rising film series.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Need for Mathematics, Science, and Engineering in Nuclear Security


howardMarylesa Howard

Scientist/Mathematicians, National Security Technologies, LLC

 

Natural Behavioral Sciences Lecture

Friday, April 10 , 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Winter Hall 210

 

The Department of Energy employs scientists, mathematicians, and engineers to work on problems ranging from renewable energy resources to global climate change. However, many people don't know that the Department of Energy also oversees the nation's nuclear weapons program, nuclear non-proliferation, nuclear emergency response, and nuclear power for the U.S. Navy. This presentation will highlight some of the scientific research interests of the Department of Energy, with a focus on measurement diagnostics and analysis for subcritical experiments in support of the Stockpile Stewardship Program at the Nevada National Security Site, the nation's premier explosives laboratory.

 

 

 

Permissible Self-Defence


froweHelen Frowe

Wallenberg Academy Research Fellow

Department of Philosophy, Stockholm University

 

Philosophy Department Lecture

Tuesday, April 14, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Hieronymus Lounge, Kerrwood Hall

 

Helen Frowe directs the Stockholm Center for the Ethics of War and Peace at Stockholm University. Her research focuses on the ethics of war and defensive killing, and she's especially interested in the moral status of non-combatants and the permissibility of killing innocent people in self-defence. She holds a doctorate from the University of Reading and has taught at the University of Kent, the University of Sheffield, and Harvard.

 

 

 

Is God the Soul of the World? Leibniz Against Three Forms of Pantheism


froweAdam Harmer

Professor of Philosophy

University of California, Riverside

 

Philosophy Department Lecture

Friday, April 17, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Winter Hall 216

 

Leibniz denies that God is the soul of the world. At first blush, his argument seems to rely on mathematical considerations, in particular on the rejection of infinite number. Professor Harmer argues that Leibniz’s rejection of the World Soul is actually the rejection of three distinct views, and that in no case does his argument rely on mathematical considerations. By identifying these distinct views and Leibniz’s distinct lines of argument against them, Harmer shows that Leibniz’s rejection of the World Soul should be seen as closely connected to central aspects of his metaphysics, including his theory of substance, his theory of perfection, and his claim that among the infinity of possible worlds, one can be designated as the best one.