—Anthony B. Pinn, the Agnes Cullen Arnold Professor of
Humanities at Rice University, will lecture on Martin Luther King Jr.’s Legacy
and the Changing Nature of U.S. Religiosity on February 4—
Princeton, NJ, January 17, 2013–Dr. Anthony B. Pinn, the Agnes Cullen Arnold Professor of
Humanities, professor of religious studies, and director of graduate studies at
Rice University, will give Princeton Theological Seminary’s annual Dr. Martin
Luther King Jr. Lecture on Monday, February 4 at 8:00 p.m. His lecture is
titled “The Legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and the Changing Nature of U.S.
Religiosity.” It will be held in Miller Chapel on the Seminary’s main campus.
Princeton Seminary faculty established the annual King Lecture as a way of
honoring the man who, according to Peter Paris, Elmer G. Homrighausen Professor
of Christian Social Ethics Emeritus, “ranks among the greatest American
leaders in both church and state because he combined religious, social, and political resources in
pursuit of racial justice and the moral enhancement of the common life.”
Pinn is a
professor and writer whose work focuses on black liberation theology, African
American religion, and African American humanism. He believes that much of what
has been written about the study of black religion avoids two fundamental
questions: What is black about black religion? What is religious about black
religion? He thinks that little attention has been given to how one should
study black religion and what is actually being studied. Pinn’s recent work
seeks to address this shortcoming through attention to the nature and meaning
of black religion. He recent research projects have attempted to explore the “quest
for complex subjectivity” as the fundamental nature of black religion. His most
substantive presentation of this research interest is Terror and Triumph: The Nature of Black Religion (Fortress Press,
He is also the
author/editor of fifteen other books, including Varieties of African American Religious Experience (Fortress Press,
1998); The Black Church in the Post-Civil
Rights Era (Orbis Books, 2002); Why Lord?: Suffering and Evil in Black Theology
(Continuum, 1995); and African American
Humanist Principles: Living and Thinking Like the Children of Nimrod (Palgrave
Macmillan, 2004). He is currently working on a book dealing with the aesthetics
of black religious experience and a coedited volume on theoretical and
methodological considerations related to the study of religion in popular
Pinn holds a
B.A. from Columbia University, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and M.A.
and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University. He is executive director of the
Society for the Study of Black Religion and cochair of the American Academy of
Religion’s Black Theology Group.
more information, call 609.497.7760 or visit www.ptsem.edu.
Theological Seminary was founded in 1812 as the first seminary established by
the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church. It is the largest
Presbyterian seminary in the country, with more than 500 students in six
graduate degree programs.