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University of Iowa News Release

March 30, 2004

Visiting Scholar To Speak At Conference On Religion, Art April 2-3

Robert Baker, professor of comparative literature in the Department of English at the University of Montana, will speak about "The Promise of the Negative: Crossings of Religion, Poetry, and Philosophy in the Modern Period" at 4 p.m. Friday, April 2, at the University of Iowa, room 1505 Seamans Center.

Baker's lecture will serve as the keynote address for the second annual Conference on Religion and the Arts, sponsored by the department of religious studies in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He will argue that important currents in modern poetry unfold as increasingly desperate displacements of older religious discourses. He will outline what he calls "the dialectic of instrumental reason and creative negativity in modern culture" in the fields of poetry and philosophy and raise some questions about the extent to which similar dynamics shape theological thought from the romantic period through the present.

The conference runs all day Saturday, April 3, in the Ohio State Room of the Iowa Memorial Union. Presenters from the UI and other colleges and universities will speak about religious thought in literature, film and painting.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact the department of religious studies in advance at 319-335-2164.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Mary Geraghty Kenyon, 319-384-0011, Program: David Klemm, department of religious studies, 319-335-2164.