Spring Quarter Events

Welcome to Spring Quarter 2023 at The Divinity School!  

Do you need an accomodation to attend an event at The Divinity School? Please call us in advance at 773-702-7170.

For everyone: Public lectures, book events, and conferences are open to the public. We are also offering a new series of events (including an art exhibit) for the upcoming month of Ramadan. 

Our Senior Ministry Presentations showcase the wide variety of work being done by our MDiv students. 

For Divinity School students: Our John C. and Jane Colman Program in the Craft of Teaching, Leadership, and Service has a Spring Quarter series focused on teaching religious studies and inclusive pedagogy. Students across our degree programs are encouraged to join! More information to come. PhD students on the academic job market, please see the Placement Committee's new conversation series. 

 DiviniTEA dates: March 27, April 10, April 24, May 8.


Tuesday, March 28-29-30

Samira Ahmed Residency Events 

Wednesday, March 29

5:30pm, Swift Lecture Hall (Third Floor) - Senior Ministry Presentation - Sydney Callaway: "Divinity Meets Economics: Collaborative Research Methodologies in Experimental Economics."

Thursday, March 30 

5:00pm, Swift 106 Carolina López-Ruiz – “Phoenician Iconography and Religious Symbolism across the Mediterranean: Two Case Studies” (Jewish Studies Workshop)

6:00pm, Seminary Co-Op Bookstore. Author Talk: Samira Ahmed, author of Amira and Hamza: The Quest for the Ring of Power. Ahmed will be joined by Zeenat Rahman, Executive Director of The University of Chicago Institute of Politics. More information.

7pm, Saieh 021: The Phoenix Sustainability Initiative, a student led group on campus, will host Prof. Sarah Fredericks for a discussion on "Institutional Guilt and Shame about Climate Change: Valuable Motivators or Dangers to be Avoided?" 

Friday, March 31 

10:30am, Zoom. Colman Teaching Program: "Teaching at Religiously-Affiliated Institutions."  More info.

12:00pm, Swift Hall Common Room Dean's Forum. These lunchtime events put our faculty in conversation with each other. Today's event features  Deuteronomy and the Pentateuch by Jeffrey StackertErin Galgay Walsh will respond. Lunch will be provided; vegetarian options available. More information.

5:45pm, Swift Lecture Hall (Third Floor) - Senior Ministry Presentation - Shradha Jain: as part of the Jain Lectureship.


Monday, April 3

4:30-6:00pm, Swift Lecture Hall: Professor Brook Ziporyn’s Inaugural Mircea Eliade Lecture. A reception will follow. More information.

Wednesday, April 5

April 5, 5:00-7:00pm, Swift Lecture Hall (Third Floor): Writing for God: A Reading and Discussion with Afghan-American author Jamil Jan Kochai. Author of 99 Nights in Logar and a short story collection, The Haunting of Hajji Hotak and Other Stories, Jamil Jan Kochai will be exploring spirituality and identity through narrative. Free copies of his work will be distributed.  More information.

5-6:30pm, Regenstein Library: CULT Minimar! CULT (Critical Understanding of Liturgies and Traditions), a student organization for undergraduates focused on the academic study of religion, presents Minimars (short for “miniature seminar”). This will provide an opportunity for students to discuss an interesting topic with a professor in an exciting, low-stress environment. Today:  discuss Liberation Theology with Dr. Raúl Zegarra, who recently completed a book on the balance between politics and religion produced by its theories. Please fill out the following form to register. Snacks provided!  More information.

Tuesday, April 11

7-8:30 pm, Swift Lecture Hall:  CULT (Critical Understanding of Liturgies and Traditions), a student organization for undergraduates focused on the academic study of religion, presents their inaugural “Evening of Divine Discourse.”  In partnership with Night of Ideas, this event will feature students delivering 10-minute talks to their peers. Please fill out the following google form with your interest. Snacks provided! 

Thursday & Friday, April 13-14, Swift Lecture Hall

Conference: A Closer Look: The Interpretive Gaze of Françoise Meltzer

This conference brings together scholars, writers and poets, all of whom have studied under or collaborated with Françoise Meltzer, to pay tribute to her inimitable interpretive gaze.  Each paper takes inspiration from her work to offer a new perspective on literature, art, or contemporary theory.

Friday, April 14

10:30-Noon, Swift 208.  Colman Program: "What is Distinctive about Teaching Religious Studies?" More info.

Saturday, April 15, Swift Hall

Conference: “New Directions in the Study of Early Islam” in honor of Fred Donner.  The conference will feature some of Prof. Donner's former students and include reflections on his legacy at the University.  More information.

Monday, April 17

5:00-7:00pm, Swift 208: “DNA Joy” Art Workshop with Jacinda Bullie: Chicago based Muslim artist and organizer Jacinda Bullie will guide attendees to make their own narrative of themselves, their histories, and their futures, through reflection and art exercises. Participants will collaborate on a large piece of art. More information.

7:00pm, Disciples of Divinity House - Senior Ministry Presentation - Danny Sanchez: "The Unbundling of Religion in America."

Tuesday, April 18

5:00pm, Swift Lecture Hall (Third Floor) - Senior Ministry Presentation - Emily King: "A Saint's Notebook: Writing at the End with Simone Weil."

Wednesday, April 19 

4:30-6PM, Swift 208. Colman Program:  "Inclusive Pedagogical Design for Students from Non-Elite Backgrounds: What I Wish I'd Understood Sooner," More info.

6:00pm, Seminary Co-Op Bookstore. Author Talk: Jennifer Haigh, author of Mercy Street. Haigh will be joined by Emily D. Crews, Assistant Director of the Martin Marty Center for the Public Understanding of Religion at the University of Chicago Divinity School. More information.

Thursday & Friday, April 20-21

Conference: Religion & Reproductive Politics. his two-day conference will bring together scholars, public intellectuals, artists, journalists, activists, and religious practitioners to engage urgent questions about the topics of religion and reproduction. More information.

Monday, April 24

5:00pm, Third Floor Theater in Ida Noyes - Senior Ministry Presentation - Charlotte Long: "Holy Kin: Mystical Implications for Engaging With the Historical Context of Teresa of Ávila"

Tuesday, April 25

Conference: "Science and Religion: From Conflict to Celebration." More info TBA; with Prof. Peter Harrison and author Marilynne Robinson. Learn more

Wednesday, April 26

5:00pm, Swift Hall Common Room - Senior Ministry Presentation - Hayley Segall: "The Singh Twins and Postmodernism: Encountering Generational Trauma Through Sikh Contemporary Art."

Thursday, April 27

 5pm, Swift Lecture Hall: Lecture by Dr. Shannen Dee Williams, author of Subversive Habits: Black Catholic Nuns in the Long African American Freedom Struggle


Monday, May 1

4:00pm, Swift Hall Common Room - Senior Ministry Presentation - Sean Willard: "A Psychedelic Reorientation to Death: Implications for How we Attend to the Fear and Anxiety of Death."

Wednesday, May 3

12:00pm, Swift Hall Common Room. Dean's Forum. These lunchtime events put our faculty in conversation with each other on new works. Today's program features Environmental Guilt and Shame: Signals of Individual and Collective Responsibility and the Need for Ritual Responses by Sarah E. Fredericks  Yousef Casewit will be responding. Lunch will be provided; vegetarian options available.  More information.

6pm, Swift Lecture Hall: God In A Technocratic Age: An Evening With Ruby Nell Sales. More information.

Thursday, May 4

4pm, Center for Race, Politics, and Culture: Race for Revival: discussion about race, religion, and empire with Helen Jin Kim, author of Race for Revival: How Cold War South Korea Shaped the American Evangelical Empire, and featured panelists Wonhee Anne Joh, Curtis Evans, and Angie Heo.

4:30pm, Swift Lecture Hall: The Divinity School's Alumnus of the Year Lecture. A reception will follow.

5pm, Swift Hall room TBD: Prof. Simeon Chavel And Dean James Robinson“The Book Of Qohelet: A Conversation” 

Monday, May 8

5:00pm, Swift Lecture Hall (Third Floor) - Senior Ministry Presentation - Shannon Page: “Set Me Free”

7:00pm, Disciples of Divinity House - Senior Ministry Presentation - Alexa Dava: "Collaborative Survival: A Filipino American Reading of Ruth"

Thursday, May 11

4:00pm, Evo Union Park Chicago, 1454 W Randolph, Chicago, IL 60607 - Senior Ministry Presentation - John Jacob Burns: “John Jacob Burns: An Exploration of Entrepreneurship, Spirituality, and the Entrepreneurial Career of Jeff Bezos”

Friday, May 12 

 10:30-Noon, Swift 208: Colman Program:  "Using Technology in the Religious Studies Classroom" More info.

12:00pm, Swift Hall Common Room: A Revolutionary Faith: A Panel Discussion. Divinity School Teaching Fellow Raúl E. Zegarra and a panel of scholars will discuss his new book A Revolutionary Faith: Liberation Theology Between Public Religion and Public Reason. Lunch and copies of the book will be provided (free of charge) for the first 30 attendees. More information.

Tuesday, May 16

5:30pm, Swift Hall Common Room - Senior Ministry Presentation - Farah Akhtar: "Reading the Book of (your) Existence: The Scriptural Hermeneutics of Ibn il Arabi."

Wednesday, May 17

6:00pm, Swift Hall Common Room - Senior Ministry Presentation - Justin Perkins: "Home-sick for a New World: Willa Cather's Threshold Imagination."

Thursday, May 18

Senior Ministry Presentation - Laura Johnson

Friday, May 19

4:00pm, location TBD - Senior Ministry Presentation - Tom McCarlie: "Ezekiel, in Technicolor"

Tuesday, May 23

5:30pm, Swift Hall Common Room - Senior Ministry Presentation - Arshan Khalid: "A Place for All People: The Possibilities and Challenges of Interfaith Organizations, from a Muslim Perspective"

Wednesday, May 24

6:00pm, Seminary Co-Op Bookstore. Author Talk: Simran Jeet Singh, author of The Light We Give: How Sikh Wisdom Can Transform You Life. Singh will be joined by Anand Venkatkrishnan, Assistant Professor of the History of Religion in South Asia at the University of Chicago Divinity School; also in the College. More information.