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“Law vs. Religion” Topic of Lecture at Yale’s Whitney Humanities Center


New Haven, Conn. — E.P. Sanders, Arts and Sciences Professor of Religion Emeritus at Duke University, will launch the 2008 Franke Lecture series on “Religion and Law in Historical Perspective” with a talk at 5 p.m. on February 6 at the Whitney Humanities Center Auditorium, 53 Wall Street.

Titled “Does Law Debase the Human-Divine Relationship? The Christian Charge Against Judaism,” the talk is free and open to the public.

Sanders’s field of expertise is Judaism and Christianity in the Greco-Roman world. His “Paul and Palestinian Judaism” won a National Religious Book Award and appeared on Choice’s list of outstanding academic books. His volume “Jesus and Judaism,” named a significant work of religious history, won a Grawemeyer Award. His other books include “The Tendencies of the Synoptic Tradition,” “Paul, the Law and the Jewish People,” “Studying the Synoptic Gospels” (with Margaret Davies), “Jewish Law from Jesus to the Mishnah,” “Paul: Past Master,” “Judaism: Practice and Belief, 63 BCE–66 CE,” and “The Historical Figure of Jesus.” His publications have been translated into Italian, French, German, Finnish, Dutch, Spanish, Danish, Lithuanian, Portuguese, Korean and Japanese.

Sanders’s work has been supported by two Killam Senior Research fellowships, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and fellowships of the American Council of Learned Societies, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the British Academy, the National Humanities Center and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is currently a Fellow of the British Academy and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The Franke Lectures are made possible by the generosity of Richard and Barbara Franke, and are intended to present important topics in the humanities to a wide and general audience. The 2008 series explores the historical relation between religion and law in Jewish, Christian and contemporary legal thought, and is organized in conjunction with the undergraduate seminar taught by Christine Hayes, professor of Religious Studies in Classical Judaica at Yale.


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