There are some truly distinguished personages popping up in Boise State's upcoming Distinguished Lecture Series (a bi-annual, student-funded series that brings speakers to Boise State who have had an impact in politics, the arts, science, business or other realms of contemporary significance) for the 2005-2006 school year. This year's speakers are an internationally renowned religion scholar/author and a Nobel Prize-winning economist.
First, Karen Armstrong, author of A History of God, Islam, The Spiral Staircase: My Climb Out of Darkness (a memoir), as well as other books on religious themes, will speak at 7 p.m. on Oct. 4 in the Student Union Jordan Ballroom.
Armstrong, a former Roman Catholic nun, has been lauded as a both provocative and a promoter of understanding among different faiths.
Armstrong's lecture, entitled "The Battle for God," is adapted from her book by the same name. She will discuss the rise of fundamentalist movements in Islam, Christianity and Judaism, including the role played by a technologically driven world with liberal Western values.
In prelude to Armstrong's lecture, a discussion of her book The Spiral Staircase will be held at 7 p.m. on September 29 at the Log Cabin Literary Center. This is a free discussion led by faculty from Boise State's English Department.
Later in the spring, the Distinguished Lecture Series will host Joseph Stiglitz, former chief economist for the World Bank and 2001 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economics.
On April 12 at 7 p.m. in the Student Union Jordan Ballroom, Stiglitz will give a talked entitled "The Economics of Information."
Stiglitz is the author of several books, including The Roaring Nineties, and is credited with helping to create a new branch of economics that explores what happens to markets when information is not available or is interpreted in different ways.