CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY KENYON
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Feb. 13, 2001
UI School of Religion mounts exhibit on religious ritual
IOWA CITY, Iowa A photographic exhibit, "Religious Ritual Across
Cultures," is on display at the University of Iowa School of Religion.
The exhibition, mounted on the third floor of Gilmore Hall, offers a sample
of the rich and diverse nature of ritual in religious practice worldwide.
It was organized by three professors in the UI College of Liberal Arts: George
Nickelsburg, emeritus professor of religion; Frederick Smith, associate professor
of religion; and Laura Graham, associate professor of anthropology.
"Rituals are a part of every religious tradition, and even though they
may seem widely divergent, many of these acts transcend cultural boundaries
and can be found everywhere from Judeo-Christian to Hindu to native Indian
traditions," Nickelsburg said. "Laying ones hands on anothers
head, raising hands or arms, prostrating oneself, embracing, shouting, singing
and forms of dance, are all found across religious traditions. We have tried
in this exhibit to provide a visual representation of the similarities among
religious ritual traditions as well as to demonstrate the diversity of these
On display as part of the exhibit are photos of a number of different types
of ritual, including sacrifice, pilgrimage, commemoration, initiation, death,
release, devotion, and thanksgiving. The exhibit will remain on display through
June 2002 and is free and open to the public from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday.