The Armstrong Lecture

The Armstrong Lectures at Kalamazoo College are made possible by the Homer J. Armstrong Endowment in Religion. Established in 1969 in honor of Dr. Homer J. Armstrong, eminent pastor and long-time trustee of Kalamazoo College. The fund was provided through the generosity of numerous friends of the College.

The Fall 2021 Armstrong Lecture

Wednesday, October 27, 2021
7:00pm EST
Olmsted Room, Mandelle Hall

This year’s guest speaker is Dr. Andrea R. Jain.

Andrea R. Jain, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Indiana University, Indianapolis, editor of the Journal of the American Academy of Religion, and author of Selling Yoga: From Counterculture to Pop Culture (Oxford 2014) and Peace Love Yoga: The Politics of Global Spirituality (Oxford, 2020). She received her doctorate degree in religious studies from Rice University in 2010. Her areas of research include religion and capitalism; global spirituality and modern yoga; gender, sexuality, and religion; and theories of religion.

Andrea

Eat Your Own Leg: The Study of Religion in the Time of Planetary Crisis


This talk serves as a call to humanities scholars to center questions about the current pandemic and planetary crisis. Jain explains how scholars of religion, for example, can uncover how religion features in capitalism’s predatory disposition, more specifically, how the same religious discourses that uphold gendered and racist structures of oppression feature in capitalist industries, such as industrial animal agriculture, that contribute to pandemic and planetary crisis. These in turn disproportionately harm historically marginalized communities. The purpose of humanities scholarship, Jain argues, should include the following: to remind scientists and health experts that equity must be at the center of their response to pandemic and planetary crisis; to uncover and analyze the needs for repair in the relationships between human societies and environmental bodies and non-human animals; and to diagnose capitalism’s death-dealing structures and the causes of ecological death in the hope that activists, in turn, can build on that scholarship to imagine radically different futures.

The lecture is free and open the public

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Past Guest Lecturers

2021, February 23: Dr. Amanullah De Sondy
2019, May 7: Dr. Robert Orsi
2018, March 5: Dr. Judith Weisenfeld
2017, February 15: Dr. Tisa Wenger
2016, May 4: Dr. Sufia Uddin
2015, May 13: Dr. Kathryn Lofton
2014, May 15: Dr. Pamela Klassen
2013, April 10: Dr. Karen King
2012, May 14: Dr. Ann Taves
2010, October 21: Dr. David Hackett
2010, February 15: Dr. Wendy Dongier
2008, May 01: Dr. Emilie M. Townes
2006, October 12: Dr. Vasudha Narayanan
2005, November 3: Dr. Bernard McGinn