Battling to the End and the American Civil War

WhenMar 16, 2012 - Mar 17, 2012 from 12:00 am CT
Event Details

Battling to the End and the American Civil War

Hosted by the Raven Foundation with Wheaton College

René Girard’s thesis that the escalation to extremes is a mechanism that escapes human control was explicated in his most recent book, Battling to the End, in the context of European history and philosophical thought. How would a study of the causes and conduct of the American Civil War support or contradict, illuminate or expand Girard’s thesis? In his book, The Civil War as a Theological Crisis, Mark A. Noll, a prominent historian of American Christianity, provides a helpful guide to that study as he documents the dispute over 19th century biblical interpretation of slavery, providing fertile ground for a mimetic analysis of war, politics and the role of religion in both.

The Raven Foundation is partnering with the Center for Applied Christian Ethics (CACE) at Wheaton College for The Civil War and Sacred Ground: Moral Reflections on War on March 16-17, 2012. Prof. Noll will deliver the keynote lecture titled, “Both Pray to the Same God,” a look at Divine Providence. This portion of the conference is open to the general public. Detailed event information and speaker bios are available here.

Pre- and post-conference events are being offered for the mimetic theory community. The first event on Friday, March 16 is a lecture by William A. Johnsen on Girard’s thesis. Prof. Johnsen, editor of Contagion, is also the editor of the two book series on mimetic theory published by MSU Press which includes Battling to the End. After having heard from Prof. Noll and other historians on Saturday, the mimetic theory community will be invited to reflect on Girard’s thesis in the context of the American Civil War.

Conference Agenda
Friday, March 16, 2012
1:00pm to 4:00pm (Hampton Inn)

Battling to the End and the American Civil War, Prof. Bill Johnsen

7:00pm to 9:00pm (CACE, Wheaton College)

The Civil War and Sacred Ground, opening lecture with Prof. Tracy McKenzie titled, “And the War Came”: Moral Reflection and the Causes of the Conflict.

Saturday, March 17, 2012
8:30am to 5:00pm (CACE, Wheaton College)

The Civil War and Sacred Ground, plenary presentation by Prof. Mark Noll titled,”Both Pray to the Same God,” a look at Divine Providence

Panel presentation

Luke Harlow: Religion, Race, and the Significance of Civil War-Era Kentucky; Laura Porter: The Problem of ‘Sin’ in the Civil War-Era Upper South.

5:30 optional dinner with Civil War and Sacred Ground historians (local restaurant)

8:30 to ? (Hampton Inn)

Battling to the End and the American Civil War, discussion with Prof. Bill Johnsen

Registration Information Cost: $50

This includes entrance to The Civil War and Sacred Ground conference and 2 wine receptions. Students are free. 

Registration for this event is available online. The Saturday night dinner is optional. It costs $50.
Rooms are being held at the Hampton Inn at a rate of $80 (before tax). Breakfast is included in the room rate. Reserve your room at the Hampton Inn at the special group rate by March 2. If you would like to arrange to share a room, please contact Maura Junius. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by March 2.

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