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Art & Soul

Jan. 18, 2005

Laughter has been called the best medicine and the closest thing to the grace of God. "Divine Comedies," this year's Art & Soul Conference set for April 7-9, will explore the redemptive power of humor with guest speakers who are contemporary leaders in Christian theology and the creative arts.

"The purpose of Art & Soul is to explore the intersection between faith and the arts, to consider how art serves as an expression of faith and how the work of artists illuminates the life of faith and the world as Christians understand it," said Michael Hanby, acting director of the Baylor Institute for Faith and Learning and director of the biennial conference. "It's a way to combine arts and the academic life that is uncommon."

Plenary speakers will be author Jeremy Begbie, Cambridge professor of systematic theology; Leif Enger, author of the popular novel Peace Like a River; Kaye Gibbons, national lecturer and award-winning author of Ellen Foster and A Virtuous Woman; Christopher Ricks, author of Dylan's Vision of Sin and professor of poetry at Oxford in addition to numerous visiting professorships; Phyllis Tickle, contributing editor in religion for Publishers Weekly and winner of the 1996 Mays Award for lifetime accomplishment in publishing and writing; and Lauren Winner, author of the autobiography, Girl Meets God and Mudhouse Sabbath.

Other artists in literature, theology, music and theater -- including the Zambian Vocal Group and international actor Bruce Kuhn -- also will be featured. Events will include public lectures and readings, writing workshops, panels, lecture/recitals, art exhibits, concerts and a scholarly conference.

For details and ticket information, visit the conference Web site at www.baylor.edu/Rel_Lit/ or contact Hanby at (254) 710-4805 or the Institute for Faith and Learning at IFL@baylor.edu.

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