Newton County residents will have an opportunity to travel to new places and encounter new cultures without leaving the state at two upcoming events at Oxford College.
Professor Zainal Abidin Bagir, director of a center for cultural and Inter-religious Studies in Indonesia will be giving a talk on the "Contemporary Expressions of Islam in Indonesia" tonight, 7 p.m. at Oxford College's Tarbutton Hall.
Host Florian Pohl, Assistant Professor of Humanities who teaches religion classes at Oxford, has known Bagir for a number of years through working with the center, which he described as a one-of-a kind program in Indonesia that started in 2000.
"At Oxford, we have an interest in interfaith relations," said Pohl. "We thought it a good compliment to the resources on campus."
He said there were presently no students from Indonesia on campus. He pointed out that most people don't think of Indonesia when they think of Islam or Muslims, but that it's the biggest Muslim country.
The lecture would be a slice of the current discourse of being a Muslim in Indonesia today, said Pohl. He said Bagir would likely talk about Muslim politics, the democratization process and about cultural expressions as well as political expressions
For more information, call (770) 784-8432.
The lecture is part of a series of talks, film showings, and events that students can attend to obtain a one-hour semester credit.
Also part of the series, Philip Cousineau will be giving a talk, "Art of Pilgrimage: Guide to Travel," at Williams Hall, 7 p.m. on Thursday.
Cousineou is the author of more than 20 books and screenplays on a wide range of topics including mythology, travel, beauty, sports and creativity.