Harvard Square Library, a project of First Parish in Cambridge (Mass.), has hired Dr. Emily Mace as their new director. Dr. Mace is a great fit for the site: she was trained in liberal religious history at Princeton University, and she teaches on Unitarian Universalist topics for Starr King School for the Ministry. For those unfamiliar with Harvard Square Library, it’s a website that includes biographies of important Unitarians and Universalists, as well as some documents by/about these figures (including entire books!). Not surprisingly, it tends to have a particular focus on Cambridge and the Boston area (hardly inappropriate for UU history).
Monthly Archives: October 2011
The study of liberal religion, especially in the history of North America, is typically focused on looking at a fairly narrow range of Protestant and Jewish groups, with some Catholic movements as well. But the liberal impulse is hardly confined to these familiar locations. One important–but widely unknown–place that it has appeared is within Islam. The average Westerner’s opinions about Islam don’t typically include any sense that it has produced liberal movements; quite the opposite. But Islam is a diverse religion, just as Christianity and Judaism are–indeed, how could 1400 years of history and more than 1 billion followers with a presence in nearly every nation not produce diversity?
To help make sense of liberal Islam, here are a few useful starting resources: