Native American responses to suffering will be the topic of discussion at The Comparison Project’s next lecture. Micheline Pesantubbee, associate professor of religious studies and American Indian native studies at the University of Iowa, will deliver the lecture, “Dancing our Troubles Away: Native American Ways of Alleviating Suffering,” on Thursday, Oct. 25. The event will be held in Olin Hall, Room 101, and begins at 7 p.m.
Pesantubbee’s lecture will examine how several Native American groups have used traditional dances to heal individuals and communities, as well as respond to colonization. Focusing primarily on the Cherokee booger dance and the Lakota ghost dance, Pesantubbee will show how dance is used as a ritual means for countering suffering with hope and harmony.
Pesantubbee earned her Ph.D. in religious studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She specializes in Native American religious traditions—primarily those of the Cherokee, Choctaw, and Lakota. Pesantubbee has recently authored a book, Choctaw Women in a Chaotic World. She has also published several essays on Native American religious movements.
Created by Timothy Knepper, associate professor of philosophy at Drake, The Comparison Project aims to bring greater awareness to the religious diversity of Des Moines. Each year it will organize a series of scholar lectures, practitioner dialogues, and comparative reflections on a particular religious topic or problematic theme. This year’s programming focuses on religious responses to suffering.
The Comparison Project is supported by the Drake University Humanities Center, Humanities Iowa, the Medbury Fund, the The Principal Financial Group Center for Global Citizenship at Drake University, the Des Moines Area Religious Council, and Cultivating Compassion: The Richard Deming Foundation.
For more information on The Comparison Project and a list of upcoming events, contact Timothy Knepper at 515-271-2167.