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In the Field

Explore "Sacred Spaces, Sacred Places" with the Vermont Humanities Council

September 24, 2012 | By Federal/State Partnership Staff

Every fall, the Vermont Humanities Council takes the time for an in-depth exploration of a humanities topic at the November conference. This year, the two-day fall conference will explore sacred buildings and religious sites with Sacred Spaces, Sacred Spaces: Religious Architecture and Sites.

Sacred buildings and sites offer visitors ways to enter into and better understand the cultures that sanctify them — from Gothic cathedrals to Muslim shrines, from Buddhist and Hindu temples to New England meetinghouses and American churches. Compelling in their own right, these buildings are also visible signifiers of spiritual beliefs and practices. Sacred Spaces, Sacred Spaces will attempt to examine these places and the beliefs and values they embody. 

Speakers at the conference include Glenn Andres, professor of the history of art and architecture at Middlebury College, who will consider the convergence of form and function in New England’s iconic meetinghouses; Dr. Nasser Rabbat, the Aga Khan Professor of Islamic Architecture at MIT, will speak about the importance of three different mosques to the Islamic world; and Professor Robert Oden, former president of both Kenyon and Carleton Colleges and a former professor of religion at Dartmouth College, who will examine the persistent power of place in religious life across a variety of religious traditions.

The conference takes place over two days, from November 9-10, 2012, at the Stoweflake Mountain Resort and Spa in Stowe, Vermont. Information about registration fees, lodging, and scholarships is available at vermonthumanities.org. Registration is required and is first-come, first-served. Registration materials are due by October 22, 2012. .

Throughout the conference, attendees can enjoy the exhibit White on White, featuring Steve Rosenthal’s photographs of the early churches of New England.