Welcome to the Department of Classics, Philosophy, and Religion, home to three disciplines engaged respectively in the study of classical languages and civilization, philosophical thought, and the scholarly study of religion. Here you will find information on our three majors, Classics, Philosophy, and Religion, our department faculty, events, student activities, and some resources including discipline specific search engines and other links useful for further research and study. You can also follow Classics, Philosophy, and Religion on Facebook.
Alumna Kelly Murphy in the Washington Post. Kelly Murphy, a philosophy and religion faculty member at Central Michigan University is teaching a religion course that’s exploring apocalyptic themes in biblical texts, literature and pop culture. In addition to earning her BA in religion at UMW, she was awarded Outstanding Graduate in Religion in the Department of Classics, Philosophy, and Religion in 2001. Read more about it here:
On Sunday, March 9th, Professor Aminrazavi will be joining a panel of local religious leaders for an interfaith discussion on the meaning of conversion. The discussion will take place in the nave of St. George’s Episcopal Church on Princess Anne Street. For more information, click here.
On Tuesday, March 25, 2014 (7 pm, Trinkle 204) Betsy Morrell Bryan will be coming to campus at the invitation of the Classics honorary society, Eta Sigma Phi. Professor Bryan is a UMW alum and currently holds the Alexander Badawy Chair in Egyptian Art and Archaeology in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Johns Hopkins University. She will be discussing her archaeological work at the temple of the goddess Mut (in Karnak, Egypt).
Professors Houghtalin (Classics) and Och (Art History) are to lead a study abroad trip to Croatia & Venice, May 13-27, 2014.
Professors Ambuel (Philosophy) and Pitts (Classics) are leading a trip to explore mindfulness in Thailand.
2014 Jefferson Lecture
Celebrating the Statute of Religious Freedom
“Whose Freedom? Islam, Gender, and the Politics of Representation”
Dodd Auditorium, January 30, 2014, 7:30 pm
Our speaker this year brought together the question of religious freedom with the concerns of feminism, in the context of Islam.
Dr. Amina Wadud was an emeritus professor of Islamic Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University, an African-American scholar of Islam with a progressive focus on Qur’an exegesis. As an Islamic feminist, she has generated controversy by addressing mixed-sex congregations, giving a sermon in South Africa in 1994, and leading Friday prayers in the United States in 2005. Established Islamic law allows only male imams in mixed-gender congregations; her actions have triggered debate about women as imams.
The department was pleased to welcome ’07 UMW (Religion) alumna and graduate student at St. Antony’s College of Oxford University, Anna Chrysostomides, back to campus on Wednesday, November 20th. She met with faculty and students at a reception before giving a lecture entitled, “Religious Identity and Conversion between Christianity and Early Islam (650-900 C.E.).”
CONFERENCE in Spring 2013
“Japan: Two Years after the 3/11 Earthquake-Tsunami ”
Friday, April 5, 2013 2 – 7 pm Lee Hall 412 Fredericksburg Campus
2:00 – 3:00 “Aftershocks: Political and Social Reverberations of 3/11 and other Recent Earthquakes in Japan” - Steve Rabson
3:00 – 4:00 “Sichuan 2008, Fukushima 3/11 and Sino-Japanese Relations”-Susan Fernsebner
4:00 – 5:00 Live Performance of Traditional Japanese Koto Music by Miyuki Yoshikami
5:00 – 6:30 “Live Your Dream” documentary film centering on the life of Virginia native Taylor Anderson, one of the two Americans to die in the tsunami at Fukushima, where she taught English after graduating from Randolph-Macon College. It features interviews of local residents, including her students, and of her family who describe her lifelong interest inJapan and her adjustments–sometimes humorous–to living there.
Sponsored by the Leidecker Center for Asian Studies Free and Open to the public
JOHN LEWIS & MARY BETH MATHEWS AT THE FAITH AND POLITICS INSTITUTE
Mary Beth Mathews, UMW Associate Professor of Religion, and John Lewis, Congressional Representative from Georgia, at the Congressional Reception on July 19, 2012, held by the Faith and Politics Institute, a non-profit organization that works to address the divisions caused by faith, race, and politics. Congressman Lewis was the featured speaker at the reception. Lewis asked Professor Mathews to relay his thanks to Mary Washington for the work it is doing on the work of James Farmer , keeping the knowledge of the Civil Rights Movement alive and helping to address those issues today. The University of Mary Washington offers a Freshman Seminar on the work of James Farmer as well as resources for scholars interested in his work.
CPRD 299 Mysterium Humanum Studies on the Theme “Imagination”
all lectures open to the public, Trinkle Hall 204, 3:00 pm
2/1 Liane Houghtalin: “Imaging the Imagination: Imaginary Landscapes in Roman Wall Painting”
2/6 David Ambuel: “Aristotle: No Thinking without Imagining”
2/8 Joe Romero: “Tradition and Originality in Greco-Roman Poetry”
2/13 David Ambuel: “Descartes: Imagination, Body, and Mind”
2/15 Angela Pitts : ”Healing with the Imagination in Ancient Greece”
2/20 David Ambuel: “Kant on the Structure of Judgment”
2/22 David Ambuel: “Kant: the Imaginative Mediation of Concepts and Perceptions”
2/27 Mark Johnson, Professor of Philosophy, University of Oregon: “Imagination Incarnate”
2/29 Karen Lang, Professor of Religion, University of Virginia: “The Power of Imagination in Tibetan Buddhist Practice”
3/12 David Ambuel: “Imaginative Constructions and Deception in Buddhist Thought”
3/14 Jim Goehring : “Imagining Eternity: Bodies, Angels, and Texts”
3/19 Mary Beth Mathews: “America’s Landscape in the Religious Imagination”
3/21 Ed Sarath, Professor of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation, University of Michigan, and president of the International Society for Improvised Music : “Improvisation, Imagination, and Interiority”
3/21 8 pm “Improvisation, Imagination, and Interiority” musical performance featuring Ed Sarath
Lee Hall, room 412
3/26 David Cain : ”Kierkegaard and the End of Imagination.” \
3/28 Joe Dreiss, Professor of Art History: “The Work of Art as Analogon: Sartre’s Notion of the Immateriality of Art”
4/2 Patricia Cox Miller, W. Earle Ledden Professor of Religion, Syracuse University: “Adam, Eve, and the Elephants: Imagining Asceticism in Early Christianity”
4/4 David Ambuel: “Husserl: Imagination and Intentionality”
4/9 Craig Vasey :“The Irrealizing Function of Consciousness”
4/11 Chris Kilmartin, Professor of Psychology: “The Use of Humor and Storytelling in Psychotherapy”
4/16 Jason Matzke : “The Role of the Imagination in Ethics”
4/18 David Ambuel: “Arnheim on Visual Thinking”
4/23 Nina Mikhalevsky: “The Practices of Philosophy and Wittgenstein’s Invitation to Imagine”
Dr. Jakub Jinek
Wednesday October 5, 2011 4:00pm Trinkle Hall room 204
“On Doing One’s Own: The Origin and Scope of the Political in Plato” by Jakub Jinek, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
Dr. Rose Mary Sheldon: “Rome vs. Parthia: The Cold War that Never Was”
Thursday Oct. 27, 2011
Lee Hall 411, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg Campus. By Dr. Rose Mary Sheldon, Professor of History, Virginia Military Institute, expert on Rome’s interactions with ancient Iran and Iraq(Parthia), and author of “Intelligence Activities in Ancient Rome: Trust in the Gods but Verify” and “Rome’s Wars in Parthia: Blood in the Sand.” Reception to follow lecture. Part of the “When Rome Faced East” lecture series. 7 pm. Free. 540/654-1023.
Dr. Sethuraman Suresh: “Ancient Roman Contacts with South and South East Asia”
Wed. Sept. 7, 2011
Lee Hall 412, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg Campus. By Dr. Sethuraman Suresh, Fulbright Senior Research Fellow, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Washington, DC, and author of numerous scholarly articles on Roman finds in India and S/SE Asia. Reception to follow lecture. Part of the “When Rome Faced East” lecture series. 7 pm. Free. 540/654-1023.
Dr. Sethuraman Suresh: “Roman Coin Finds in India and Sri Lanka”
Thurs. Sept. 8, 2011
Lee Hall 411, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg Campus. By Dr. Sethuraman Suresh, Fulbright Senior Research Fellow, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Washington, DC, and author of numerous scholarly articles on Roman finds in India and S/SE Asia. Reception to follow lecture. Part of the “When Rome Faced East” lecture series. 7 pm. Free. 540/654-1023.
Dr. Steven Sidebotham: “The Site of Berenike in Roman Egypt and its Maritime Trade Connections with the East”
Thurs. Sept. 22, 2011
Lee Hall 411, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg Campus. By Dr. Steven Sidebotham, Professor of History, University of Delaware, excavator of Berenike, and author of “Berenike and the Ancient Maritime Spice Route” Reception to follow lecture. Part of the “When Rome Faced East” lecture series. 7 pm. Free. 540/654-1023.