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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 26, 2008
Contact: Gina Hebert, 508-289-7725; ghebert@mbl.edu

Harvard Divinity School Professor to Discuss Religion and Politics in Current Fundamentalist Movements
Lecture Kicks Off 2008-2009 MBL Falmouth Forum Season

MBL, WOODS HOLE, MA—Harvey Cox, Harvard University professor of divinity and a best-selling author of books on Protestant theology will kick off the 2008-2009 Falmouth Forum season with a lecture titled "Religion and Politics in Current Fundamentalist Movements" on Friday, October 3 at 7:30 p.m. in the MBL’s (Marine Biological Laboratory’s) Lillie Auditorium, 7 MBL Street, Woods Hole. The lecture, presented by the MBL Associates, is free and open to the public.

Why have so-called fundamentalist movements emerged in Judaism, Christianity and Islam in recent years? Why have they attracted so many people? How are they changing, and what future do they have? Is the term fundamentalist useful or misleading? Cox will examine many of today’s movements and their interface with current politics.

Harvey Cox is Hollis Professor of Divinity at Harvard, where he has been teaching since 1965, both at Harvard Divinity School and in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. An American Baptist minister, he was the Protestant chaplain at Temple University and the director of religious activities at Oberlin College; an ecumenical fraternal worker in Berlin; and a professor at Andover Newton Theological School. His research and teaching interests focus on the interaction of religion, culture, and politics. Among the issues he explores are urbanization, theological developments in world Christianity, Jewish-Christian relations, and current spiritual movements in the global setting (particularly Pentecostalism).

Cox has been a visiting professor at Brandeis University, Seminario Bautista de Mexico, the Naropa Institute, and the University of Michigan. He is a prolific author. His most recent book is When Jesus Came to Harvard: Making Moral Decisions Today. His Secular City, published in 1965, became an international bestseller and was selected by the University of Marburg as one of the most influential books of Protestant theology in the twentieth century. His other books include The Feast of Fools; The Seduction of the Spirit; Religion in the Secular City; The Silencing of Leonardo Boff: Liberation Theology and the Future of World Christianity; Many Mansions: A Christian's Encounters With Other Faiths; Fire From Heaven: The Rise of Pentecostal Spirituality; The Reshaping of Religion in the Twenty-First Century; and Common Prayers: Faith, Family, and a Christian's Journey Through the Jewish Year.

Admission to this Falmouth Forum presentation is free and open to the public. A buffet dinner is available before the lecture at 6:00 p.m. in the Swope Center located near the auditorium. Dinner tickets are $25 and must be purchased in advance at either Eight Cousins Children’s Books, Main Street, Falmouth, or at the MBL’s Communications Office in the Candle House, 127 Water Street in Woods Hole. Dinner seats are limited and tickets are only available until they sell out or until 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 30. All tickets are nonrefundable. For more information contact the MBL’s Communications Office at 508-289-7423.

The Falmouth Forum will continue throughout the fall and winter. The remaining lectures in the series are below.

October 10
"The U.S.A. from Watergate to 9/11" - James T. Patterson, Professor of History emeritus, Brown University

January 30
"Just Like a Man? John Donne, T.S. Eliot, Bob Dylan, and the Accusation of Misogyny" - Christopher Ricks, Professor of Humanities, Boston University, and award-winning teacher and literary critic

February 27
"Music: An Art Form and Industry in Flux" - Stephen Simon, former music director and conductor, Washington D.C. Chamber Symphony and Bonnie Ward Simon, producer of their classical music CD series for families

March 20
"Interpreting Holocaust Survivor Testimonies" - Lawrence Langer, Emeritus Professor of English, Simmons College, Holocaust scholar and award-winning author

"Healthcare Underwater: The Katrina Experience" - James Aiken, M.D., Louisiana State University Health Science Center

All lectures are free and open to the public. For more information and for full lecture descriptions, visit http://www.mbl.edu/falmouthforum

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The MBL is a leading international, independent, nonprofit institution dedicated to discovery and to improving the human condition through creative research and education in the biological, biomedical and environmental sciences. Founded in 1888 as the Marine Biological Laboratory, the MBL is the oldest private marine laboratory in the Western Hemisphere. For more information, visit www.MBL.edu.

The MBL Associates are a group of individuals and businesses that support the scientific mission of the MBL through their gifts to the Annual Fund. The Associates sponsor educational and research programs for the MBL and raise funds for special projects. In addition, they operate the MBL Associates Gift Shop, located on Water Street in Woods Hole, the profits from which support scientific fellowships.