Martin Marty Center for the public understanding of religion

The Martin Marty Center for the Public Understanding of Religion builds on a longstanding conviction of the Divinity School that the best and most innovative scholarship in religion arises from sustained dialogue with the world beyond the academy. It contributes to this dialogue by offering scholarly perspectives on the religious questions facing the wider public, while encouraging faculty and students to situate their scholarly questions within a broader cultural frame of reference. 



artistic map image for Global Christianities series

Rustandy Global Christianity Distinguished Speaker Series

Curbside COVID-19 testing at the University of Chicago Medicine

Medical Practice in the Midst of Global Pandemic

An Enhancing Life Research Laboratory 

The Enhancing Life Research Laboratory, a pilot program partially funded by the Marty Center, will give 12 physicians from around the world skills and tools to navigate orientational distress.

Typologies of Interfaith Education Symposium

Typologies of Interfaith Education Symposium

January 11-21, 2021 

The Martin Marty Center is excited to host this symposium in collaboration with Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), Chicago. It will consist of an opening plenary, led jointly by David Nirenberg, Dean of the University of Chicago Divinity School, and Eboo Patel, Founder and President of Interfaith Youth Core, followed by four interactive panels on relevant themes related to interfaith education.

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swift hall

Marty Center Symposium on Religion and the 2020 Elections

January 11-21, 2021 

This Marty Center symposium will address how religion shapes American politics--and vice-versa--in the midst of political polarization, economic crisis, and social upheaval.


Meet the Marty Center Fellows

Our Marty Center Fellows situate their research within a broader cultural frame of reference, bringing their perspectives to religious questions facing the wider public. 

Caroline Anglim

My dissertation approaches medical ethics as a space of public, democratic discourse. I am working to identify analytical categories and conceptual distinctions in democratic theories and to make those relevant and useful to medical ethicists. I am most interested in how medical ethicists ha...


Christine Helmer

Christine Helmer (Marty Center Senior Fellow, 2021-2022) holds the Peter B. Ritzma Chair of Humanities at Northwestern University, where she is also Professor of German and Religious Studies. She is a theologian of Christianity and has published in different areas of theology: biblical theology a...


Daniel Kim

My dissertation addresses a long-standing inarticulacy within modern medicine about its malaise and its good. I locate the problem in its dominant but reductive image of the human person, which tends to regard ethical and religious values in terms solely of their instrumental importance. Drawing ...


Diane Picio

My dissertation, “A Series of Family Resemblances: Interrogating the Public/Private Divide through Hollywood’s American Family,” engages American identity and its mythology. Much of American identity and its corresponding mythology is indebted to the division between the “public” and “private” sp...



Seminar and fellowship programs are oriented towards the intersection of religion and public life, and encourage faculty and students to put their scholarly questions into a broader cultural frame. 

Prof.Hammerschlag teaching

Our annual yearlong Marty Center seminar puts together junior and senior scholars for a unique interdisciplinary experience.

students at lecture

The Brauer Seminar encourages interdisciplinary research and teaching, with a new topic (and instructors) annually. 

The Biggest Questions Podcast

The Biggest Questions

The Biggest Questions Podcast is a new project sponsored by the Martin Marty Center for the Public Understanding of Religion.

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