Internationally acclaimed writer and scholar of religions Reza Aslan will present an original, multi-media talk exploring the origin of religion and how different ideas of God have both united, and divided us for millennia.
At the nucleus of his provocative new work, God: A Human History, is one idea that has spanned time, locations, and cultures: the concept of the “humanized god”—a supercharged, divine version of ourselves.
Reza Aslan is a professor of creative writing at the University of California, Riverside. He was previously a Wallerstein Distinguished Visiting Professor of Religion, Conflict, and Community at Drew University, where he taught from 2012 to 2013, and Assistant Visiting Professor of Religion at the University of Iowa, where he taught from 2000 to 2003. Dr. Aslan holds a bachelor’s degree in religious studies and a minor in biblical Greek from Santa Clara University (1992-1995).
He has a master of theological studies at the Divinity School from Harvard University (1997-1999), and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He also holds am M.F.A. in Fiction degree from the University of Iowa, where he was named the Truman Capote Fellow in Fiction. Dr. Aslan’s first book, No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam, was an international bestseller, and his book Zealot was a #1 New York Times bestseller. In addition, he authored How to Win a Cosmic War: God, Globalization, and the End of the War on Terror.
Aslan has also edited two volumes: Tablet & Pen: Literary Landscapes from the Modern Middle East, and Muslims and Jews in America: Commonalities, Contentions, Complexities. Dr. Aslan is the founder of AslanMedia.com, which is a social media site for news and information on the greater Middle East. He has written for numerous publications and is a frequent guest on major news networks.
He is the recipient of the Levantine Cultural Center’s East-West Media Award (2012), the Media Bridge-Builder Award from the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding (2013), and in 2014 he became an Intersections International Honoree for his work promoting justice, reconciliation, and peace. In addition to his role as a Consulting Producer on the acclaimed HBO series The Leftovers, Aslan is also the host and Executive Producer of two other original television programs: Rough Draft with Reza Aslan (premiered on Ovation), and the CNN documentary series, Believer. He also served as an Executive Producer on the ABC drama, Of Kings and Prophets.
No God but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam (2005)
Beyond Fundamentalism (2009)
Caravanserai: Traces, Places, Dialogue in the Middle East (2012)
Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth (2013)
God: A Human History (Forthcoming in 2017)