How can the study of religion correct errors, raise new questions, and elevate the public discourse?
In this conversation, Prof. Pagels and Rabbi Lamm will discuss what Christians and Jews should know about their own histories in order to understand one another better.
Elaine Pagels, a historian of religion, is the Harrington Spear Paine Professor at Princeton University and an Aspen Institute Trustee. Pagels joined the Princeton faculty in 1982, shortly after receiving a MacArthur Fellowship. Perhaps best known as the author of The Gnostic Gospels, The Origin of Satan, and Adam, Eve and the Serpent, she has published widely on Gnosticism and early Christianity, and continues to pursue research interests on topics that include sexuality and politics, visions, and the origins of Christian anti-semitism. Her most recent book is a departure from the others. One in which she tells her own story, and why she loves investigating the history of religion: it’s called Why Religion? A Personal Story. In 2013 she received an honorary law degree from her alma mater, Harvard University, and, in 2016, the National Medal for the Arts from President Barack Obama.
Ari Lamm became Chief Executive Officer of the Bnai Zion Foundation in 2020. Prior to his new position, Dr. Lamm served as Special Advisor to the President of Yeshiva University where he oversaw all strategic initiatives emerge from the Office of the President. He is formerly the William Fischman Resident Scholar at Manhattan’s Jewish Center. A graduate of Yeshiva University, Rabbi Lamm earned his MA, as a US-UK Fulbright Scholar, in Jewish Studies and Eastern Christianity from University College London, and ordination from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. He completed his PhD in ancient Judaism and Christianity at Princeton. One of Dr. Lamm’s passions is writing. He is a founding editor and contributor at Lehrhaus, a premier online publication for contemporary Jewish thought, and an alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship. His writing has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Jerusalem Post, Tablet Magazine, and First Things Magazine.