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Historian Gutierrez to deliver religious studies lecture

Ramón Gutiérrez, historian, award-winning author, and director of the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture at the University of Chicago, will deliver the 2012 James Kirk Lecture — sponsored by the Department of Religious Studies — at DU on April 11.

The title of his lecture is Reies López Tijerina and the Religious Origins of the Mexican-American Civil Rights Movement. An early leader of the Chicano movement in the United States, López Tijerina was known primarily for his activism in the 1960s and ’70s.

“This year’s lecture marks the 15th in a truly distinguished series that continues to enhance the University’s mission and its dedication to the public good,” says Professor Gregory Allen Robbins, chair of the Department of Religious Studies.

Gutiérrez — a 1983 winner of the MacArthur Foundation Prize Fellowship — is the author of many publications on race and ethnicity, including the award-winning book When Jesus Came, the Corn Mothers Went Away: Marriage, Sexuality and Power in New Mexico, 1500–1846.

He also has written extensively on race and ethnicity in American life, Indian-white relations in the Americas, Chicano history, the social and economic history of the Southwest, colonial Latin America and Mexican immigration.

Gutiérrez has received many academic awards during his career, including the John Hope Franklin Prize from the American Studies Association and the Frederick Jackson Turner Prize from the Organization of Historians.

The lecture is scheduled for 7 p.m. in the commons in Ruffatto Hall,  at the corner of East Evans Avenue and High Street. The lecture is free and open to the public. A reception in Gutiérrez’s honor begins at 6:30 p.m.

The lecture series is named after retired DU professor James Kirk, an expert on the philosophy of religion and Asian religions and one of the founding members of the Department of Religious Studies. Last year’s Kirk Lecturer was Professor Timothy Beal of Case Western University, a well-known scholar who works on the cultural history of the Bible. The title of his lecture was The End of the Word as We Know It: the Bible in the Twilight of Print Culture.

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