COME LEARN WITH US.

In our educational program we seek to explore the resources of the Christian Tradition and draw on critical scholarship in order to understand contemporary cultural change and address shared human questions in ways that enrich and challenge the university community. Our educational initiatives cover a broad range of issues, but we focus on several areas of inquiry that play a crucial role in modern culture.

TECHNOLOGY & THE HUMAN

CREATION CARE & SUSTAINABILITY

CREATIVITY & THE ARTS

SELF & SOCIETY

FAITH & VOCATION

HIGHER EDUCATION & THE UNIVERSITY

In addition to our lectures, classes, reading groups, publications, and podcast, the Study Center hosts Pascal’s Coffeehouse, an expression of Christian hospitality and an embodiment of the Christian understanding we seek to explore as a Study Center. 

CLASSES

Fall 2021

Wednesdays starting September 15th at 11:45 a.m.| CSC Classroom

RECOVERING THE BODY:  AN EXPLORATION OF EMBODIMENT AND HUMAN EXPERIENCE

Director's Class — Michael Sacasas   

In the second chapter of Genesis, we read that God created the first man by breathing life into a body formed from the dust of the ground. In this way, the biblical account captures both the spiritual and physical dimensions of the human person. But when we think about what it means to be human, we tend to emphasize what is perceive as exceptional, which means that we focus on the spiritual dimensions without paying sufficient attention to the nature of our embodiment.  

This class aims to address this imbalance by taking up the intellectual, moral, and spiritual dimensions of our embodiment. What does it mean to affirm the fundamental goodness of our bodies?  What difference does this affirmation make to how we think about human flourishing? What happens when our body is no longer the center of our experience, a situation enabled by electronic and digital technologies? And what would it take to re-ground our experience in the fittingness of the body and its senses to the world? Join us as we explore these questions and more over the course of eight weeks beginning Wednesday, September 15th at 11:45 a.m. 

READING GROUPS

Fall 2021

 
 
 

LECTURES

Fall 2021

November 12th | 6:00 p.m.

ZOMBIE BEHAVIORISM: FROM ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE TO ARTIFICIAL EMOTION

Affective computing refers to technologists’ many methods of assessing, simulating, predicting, and stimulating human emotion with artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics. Affective computing was supposed to be a model of cooperation between industry, the academy, and government, where scientific experts would advise public-spirited bureaucrats and ambitious entrepreneurs on how best to manage citizens and market to consumers. But the field remains mired in controversy, as more persons bridle at machines that (claim to) feel their pain, spark their joy, and identify their furtive eye movements or telltale grimaces.

This talk will explore the intricate intertwining of affective computing, gamification, behaviorism, and strategic action designed to manipulate and control persons. Emotions’ value in life lies at least in part in their fragility, ineffability, and mutability, depending on a dynamic articulation, dialogue, and re-articulation that defies the formalization characteristic of computation. Whatever the proper bounds of artificial intelligence, it should not include artificial emotions.

Every other Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. beginning September 22nd

RACE IN FLORIDA HISTORY

Kevin Bird  |   CSC Classroom 

Join us as we read Emancipation Betrayed:  The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida from Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920 by UF professor of history, Dr. Paul Ortiz. 

The group will meet every other Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. beginning on September 22nd and it will be led by Kevin Bird. 

September 27th | October 11th and 25th  |  November 8th at 8 p.m.

READINGS IN THE CHURCH FATHERS

Michael Sacasas | Virtual group hosted on Zoom

This reading group will be discussing selections from the early church fathers on a variety of theological and moral topics. The group will meet every other Monday at 8PM for four sessions beginning September 27th. 

Please email Mike Sacasas for more information. 

 

PODCAST

A NEWSLETTER OF THE
CHRISTIAN STUDY CENTER

Staff

If you've not done so already, take a moment and subscribe to our newsletter here. You can peruse past installments here. We use the newsletter to periodically publish a short essay from study center staff as well as recommended readings and resources. We also use the newsletter feed to post program content. Please note that this newsletter is distinct from the CSC mailing list through which regular program updates are sent. 

The Newsletter is also available via Podcast on the following podcast listening apps:

 

GRADUATE ROUNDTABLE

Spring 2021

September 17th, October 22nd, December 3rd

GRADUATE ROUNDTABLE

Brent Henderson  |  Henderson's home

A reading group for graduate students led by Brent Henderson, Associate Professor of Linguistics at UF. The group is hosted by the Hendersons at their home and gathers around food and conversation. 

 

This semester, the group will be discussing John Inazu's Confident Pluralism: Surviving and Thriving through Deep Differences.

Please email the Study Center for details.