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AMY HOLLYWOOD SPEAKS ON CHRISTIANITY AND MYSTICISM AT BARD “Traumatic Devotions: Mysticism and Memory in Late Medieval Mysticism” is the topic of a free lecture on November 2

Jennifer Wai-Lan Huang
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON—The Division of Languages and Literature at Bard College presents a lecture by Amy Hollywood, Elizabeth H. Monrad Professor of Christian Studies, Harvard Divinity School, titled “Traumatic Devotions: Mysticism and Memory in Late Medieval Mysticism,” at Bard College on Thursday, November 2. Free and open to the public, the lecture begins at 6:00 p.m. in room 102 of the F.W. Olin Humanities Building. “I think we are in a moment when what we do here—attempting to think in informed, complex, critical, and creative ways about religion—is important to much larger communities than our own,” Hollywood said in an interview shortly after she accepted her chaired position at Harvard Divinity School in 2005. “Things have changed in a way that made it obvious how important it is for people to be religiously literate, and by that I mean to be able to understand and discern the complexity of what’s going on in the religious communities in the U.S. and around the world.” Hollywood, a historian of Christian thought specializing in mysticism, with strong interests in feminist theory, psychoanalysis, and continental philosophy, is regarded as representing two of the most important trends in contemporary religion: the emergence of women into public life, including as scholars and religious leaders, and the increasing fascination and interest in religious experience. Hollywood’s first book, The Soul as Virgin Wife: Mechthild of Magdeburg, Marguerite Porete, and Meister Eckhart (University of Notre Dame Press, 1995), is a study of the body and gender in late medieval Christian mysticism. It received the International Congress of Medieval Studies’ Otto Grundler Prize for the best book in medieval studies. Her second book, Sensible Ecstasy: Mysticism, Sexual Difference, and the Demands of History (University of Chicago Press, 2001), deals with Georges Bataille, Simone de Beauvoir, Jacques Lacan, and Luce Irigaray, and their fascination with excessive bodily and affective forms of Christian mysticism. Hollywood is also the editor of the Gender, Theory, and Religions Series for Columbia University Press. She is currently writing about memory, mourning, and Christian mysticism. For further information, contact Karen Sullivan, associate professor of literature, Bard College, at or (845) 758-7571. ###

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This event was last updated on 11-06-2006