News Archive: 2014

Fall Semester

Congratulations to Stephen C. Finley for the publication of his co-edited book, Esotericism in African American Religious Experience: "There Is a Mystery". . . (Brill, 2015). The book inaugurates a new academic enterprise called Africana Esoteric Studies. The annual meeting American Academy of Religion held a joint session of the Western Esotericism Group and the Afro American Religious History Group, which officially announced and released the book to the public.

Dr. Ryan Stokes (Asst. Prof. of Hebrew Bible at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminar; Ph.D., Yale University, 2010) made a presentation in the LSU Religious Studies Faculty Seminar on November 12. His topic was "The Satan Figure in the Hebrew Bible: Accuser or God's Executioner?"

Dr. Gail Sutherland was recently featured in a Reveille article that highlighted her course on religion and food. Often taken for granted, Dr. Sutherland's interview describes how important food is in religion and how it intersects with economic, cultural, political and ethical matters.
Spring Course Mixes Food and Religious Traditions - The Daily Reveille

Congratulations to Associate Professor, Charles Isbell, who recently published his ninth book, How Jews and Christians Interpret Their Sacred Texts: A Study in Transvaluation (Resource Publications, 2014), which "is a comparative textual study that demonstrates the connections between the Hebrew Scriptures, sacred both to Judaism and Christianity, and the Jewish Talmud and Christian New Testament, which respectively became the basis for all modern systems of the two faiths." The book is sure to impact Textual Studies, Comparative Religious Studies, Jewish Studies, and Christian Studies.


Spring Semester

Paula Arai received a Tiger Athletic Foundation award for excellence in undergraduate teaching. She was honored at an awards ceremony on April 30.

Gail Sutherland and Stephen Finley served as the selection committee for the Lange-Button King award in April. After much deliberation, they selected two students to receive the award. They felt that it was not possible to narrow the choice to a single student. In fact, they felt that there were five very strong applicants this year. Melissa (Summer) Keane and Joshua Hamburg are our recipients this year. Congratulations to them.

Paula Arai was invited to make a presentation at the International Symposium for Contemplative Studies sponsored by the Mind and Life Institute in Boston, MA, October 30–November 2, 2014. This program features the Dalai Lama as the keynote speaker. Paula is writing a book about a Buddhist scientist/artist and will be exhibiting some of his artwork. The first link below tells about the conference, and the second shows Paula’s part.

Mike Pasquier was named a 2013 Rainmaker Emerging Scholar in the Area of Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, and Behavioral Sciences. This award is given in recognition of outstanding research/creative productivity and scholarship for a junior faculty member holding a tenure-track or tenured position at LSU. The Rainmaker awards are divided into three categories: Emerging Scholar, Mid-Career Scholar, and Senior Scholar. In each category, two awards are given: one for a scholar in the area of Arts, Humanities, etc. and one for scholar in the area of Science, Technology, etc. So Mike is one of only six faculty members to receive a Rainmaker award this year. This award program is sponsored by Campus Federal Credit Union, and awardees were selected by the Council on Research from a pool of nominations submitted in the fall. Rainmaker awardees will be honored at a ceremony on Wednesday, March 26 from 7 to 9 PM at the LSU Faculty Club.

Arthur Remillard, Associate Professor of Religious Studies at St. Francis University, delivered the lecture “’Baton Rouge is Football Crazy’: Religion and the Origins of Football Mania in the South, 1892-1926,” on February 10, 2014 in the Lawton Room of LSU Tiger Stadium. Thanks go to Mike Pasquier, who arranged the lecture with funds from the Seynaeve Professorship in Christian Studies.