TACOMA — Author and columnist James Carroll will speak about “Anti-Semitism, History and Conscience: A Christian Reflects” on April 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kilworth Memorial Chapel at the University of Puget Sound.
“I want to help people, especially college students, see this as more than just dry history,” said Carroll. “We’re still in the middle of this great Western tragedy.”
Carroll will discuss how the basic attitudes that allowed the Holocaust to happen still influence Western culture today. Carroll writes a regular column for the Boston Globe and is the author of nine novels. His latest book is Constantine’s Sword, the Church and Jews: A History.
The New York Times Book Review described the book as “a history of the long and bitter fruits of the schism among Jews two millenniums ago about the meaning of eschatology, messianism and faith itself — the schism that finds its origin in the life and work of Jesus of Nazareth. And it is a book of a deeper sort — a rigorous theological and moral dialectic that Carroll never removes from the personal necessity of choice, for good over evil, for memory over denial and for love over power.”
“Any believing Christian who seriously reflects on the Holocaust has to do serious reflection on anti-Semitism,” said Carroll. “How do our fundamental assumptions denigrate those who are different?”
Carroll was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1969 and was the chaplain at Boston University until 1974, when he left the priesthood to concentrate on writing. His first novel, Madonna Red, was translated into seven languages. Several other novels became New York Times bestsellers, including Mortal Friends, Family Trade and Prince of Peace.
His memoir, An American Requiem: God, My Father, and the War that Came Between Us, received the 1996 National Book Award for non-fiction.
The Swope Endowed Lectureship on Ethics, Religion is the sponsor of this free lecture, which is open to the public. For directions to Kilworth Chapel and information on parking, visit www.ups.edu/events/kilworthchapel.htm.