The UT Libraries Diversity Committee Presents Films with food and culture in support of the Summer 2008 Culture Corner.
3:00 p.m. Babette’s Feast
In 19th century Denmark, two adult sisters live in an isolated village with their father, who is the honored pastor of a small Protestant church that is almost a sect unto itself. Although they each are presented with a real opportunity to leave the village, the sisters choose to stay with their father, to serve to him and their church. After some years, a French woman refugee, Babette, arrives at their door, begs them to take her in, and commits herself to work for them as maid/housekeeper/cook. Sometime after their father dies, the sisters decide to hold a dinner to commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birth. Babette experiences unexpected good fortune and implores the sisters to allow her to take charge of the preparation of the meal. Although they are secretly concerned about what Babette, a Catholic and a foreigner, might do, the sisters allow her to go ahead. Babette then prepares the feast of a lifetime for the members of the tiny church and an important gentleman related to one of them.
5:00 p.m. Like Water For Chocolate
Tita and Pedro want to get married, but Tita has to take care of her ageing mother and is not allowed to marry. Pedro ends up marrying Tita’s sister, but lets Tita know he only married her sister to be closer to her. When Tita is forced to make the wedding cake, the guests at the wedding are overcome with sadness… Tita has discovered she can do strange things with her cooking.
Rachelle Scott will speak July 8 in the Hodges Library Auditorium about her book Nirvana for Sale?: Buddhism, Wealth, and the Dhammakāya Temple in Contemporary Thailand . This event is sponsered by the UT Libraries Diversity Committee in support of the Culture Corner.
Nirvana for Sale?: Buddhism, Wealth, and the Dhammakāya Temple in Contemporary Thailand examines the relationship between wealth and piety in Thai Buddhism and relates varying perspectives on this relationship to different constructions of Buddhist religiosity and to debates over orthodoxy and religious authority. Rather than identifying normative Buddhist views on wealth and noting inconsistencies, Scott addresses the question, when and under what circumstances is the relationship between Buddhist piety and wealth described in favorable terms and when is it viewed in terms of conflict and tension?
Rachelle Scott studies the history of Theravada Buddhism in South and Southeast Asia, with an emphasis on contemporary Buddhism in Thailand and issues of religious authority, monastic-lay relations, and globalization. She is currently finishing a book manuscript on contemporary debates over monastic and lay wealth in Thailand and the linkage of these discourses to particular constructions of Buddhist identity, practice, and authority. Her current research examines the use of modern media for the dissemination of religious teachings in Thailand, and how these media construct new religious communities as they redefine sangha-lay relations.
Mark Hulsether will speak June 18 in the Hodges Library Auditorium about his book Religion, Culture, and Politics in the Twentieth-Century United States. This event is sponsered by the UT Libraries Diversity Committee in support of the Culture Corner.
In Religion, Culture, and Politics Hulsether leads readers on a tour of religion in the United States. He introduces key players and offers a set of case studies to explore the interaction of these players with major trends in U.S. cultural history. Students in American studies and cultural studies will especially appreciate how Hulsether frames his analysis using categories such as cultural hegemony, race and gender contestation, popular culture, and empire, enabling a more informed and constructive discussion of religion in these fields.
Hulsether offers a synthesis that is concise yet internally complex and dynamic – one that gives special attention to religious diversity and conflict, the relations between religious groups and broader historical trends, and the internal struggles of religious people as they set priorities and cope with emerging change.
Book information and image courtesy of Amazon.