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Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life

The American Studies Institute on Religion in Contemporary America: Church, State and Society

Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life

Organized by the Boisi Center for Religion and
American Public Life at Boston College

Through the combined resources of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life, Boston College will be offering a 30 day program, running from June 2-July 1, for sixteen foreign scholars from countries with significant numbers of Muslims. The goals of the program are to provide these scholars with a better understanding of the ways that religion influences, and is influenced by, American society. There will be an emphasis on the diversity of religious belief in America and the norms and institutions that permit this diversity to flourish; how the principles of religious freedom and tolerance are balanced through our legislative and legal systems; the role of religion in shaping foreign and domestic policy; and the reciprocal influence of religion on democracy and democracy on religion.

These goals will be pursued through an intensive academic program that will include lectures, readings, discussions, guided excursions, and informal social activities with faculty, students, and members of religious groups in the Boston community including Muslim immigrants and American converts to Islam. Participants will also meet with a variety of scholars, religious leaders, politicians, and members of the press. In addition, the group will travel to Washington DC for a week, staying at Catholic University of America and taking in the sights and ideas that suffuse the nation’s capital.

The overall goal of the program is to facilitate a more informed exchange of ideas, discussions, and understandings between scholars and opinion leaders in the United States and in Muslim countries. It is hoped that the long term effect of the program will be to develop stronger and more beneficial ties between the people in our communities. The scholars will be invited to have public discussions of their views, ideas and impressions of Muslim-American relations or topics of their choosing. The public is invited to join these presentations and discussions. To learn more about the time and place of these events, please sign up to be a part of the Boisi Center Mailing list or check the schedule posted on this website for further information. 

  Academic Directors:
Professor Alan Wolfe
Professor Patricia M.Y. Chang
Professor Qamar-ul Huda