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Martin E. Marty Award for the Public Understanding of Religion Forum: Jacob Olupona

Tina Gadosky
Published on 27 Aug 2019 / In Religion

2018 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Religion
November 18
Denver, Colorado

Jacob Olupona is the recipient of the 2018 Martin E. Marty Award for the Public Understanding of Religion. Olupona is Professor of African Religious Traditions, and Professor of African and African American Studies, at Harvard University. The author of five books and editor of six others, his research ranges across African spirituality and ritual practices in detailing religious pluralism in Africa and African diasporic communities in the Americas, including the under-studied "reverse missionaries" from Africa who have come to the United States to establish churches. In addition to Olupona's seminal scholarly work in expanding understanding of the diversity and complexity of African religions, he is also known for his work for peace and understanding in Nigerian civic, academic, religious and political spheres, and was the winner of the prestigious National Order of Merit, Nigeria's highest honor for intellectual accomplishment in science, medicine, engineering/technology, or the humanities.

In this year’s Marty Award Forum, John Campbell, former U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria and current Ralph Bunche Senior Fellow for Africa Policy Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, will serve as interlocutor for an extended public dialogue about Olupona’s life and work.

Erik Owens, Boston College, presiding

Jacob K. Olupona, Harvard University
John Campbell, Council on Foreign Relations

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