Will Tackle Questions About Religion and Violence
February 9, 2006
Questions about the link between violence and religious traditions,
and their sacred writings, have been front and center in the current
“One entry point to the discussion is a close and honest
look at the key texts in question, on their own terms, and in their
own literary and historical contexts,” said David Bernat,
assistant professor of religion at Wellesley College.
In conjunction with Boston University’s Department of Religion,
Bernat has convened a group of prominent biblical scholars to address
these issues at a two-day conference called “Religion and
Violence: The Biblical Heritage.” The conference keynote
address will be presented Sunday, Feb. 19, at 7:30 pm at Boston
University Hillel by Ziony Zevit of the University of Judaism on “Cosmic
Disintegration, Ritual Repair and the Search for Violence in Israelite
On Monday, Feb. 20, a daylong symposium from 8 am-3:30 pm will
take place in Pendleton West 212 on the Wellesley College campus.
The symposium entails two panels, one focused on the Hebrew Bible/Old
Testament and one treating the New Testament and Early Christianity.
Presentation titles include “The Problem of Violence in Prophetic
Literature” and “The Legacy of Sectarian Rage: Vengeance
Fantasies in the New Testament.” A closing lecture, “Forms
of Ritualizing Violence: Past and Present,” with a response
from Wellesley Professor of Religion Stephen Marini, will bring
the religion/violence question into a broader perspective.
The symposium is free and open to the public, and breakfast, coffee
break and lunch are included. The event is sponsored by the Elizabeth
Luce Moore Fund for Christian Studies at Wellesley College and
the Luce Program in Scripture and Literary Arts at Boston University.
For more information about the speakers and their presentations,
go to the conference Web site at www.wellesley.edu/Religion/David_Bernat/Writing/writing.html or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.