Dr. Taslima NasrinWILSON, N.C. – Barton College is pleased to welcome Taslima Nasrin, a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow, as the featured guest for the 2010 Allan R. Sharp Religion in Life Series set for Tuesday, Nov. 16, at 7:30 p.m. in Howard Chapel. Her lecture is titled “My Struggle for Equality.” This event is open to the public at no charge, and the community is invited to attend.

An author and human rights activist, Nasrin was born in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) and grew up in a tightly regimented Muslim conservative environment. As a young child, she pushed the gender boundaries of society, attending medical school and becoming a writer and editor of literary magazines that questioned women’s oppression and tradition. After receiving numerous writing awards and publicity for her controversial work, Islamic fundamentalists launched campaigns against her writings. When a “fatwa” was issued against her, she was confined to her house and forced to leave her job. Nasrin eventually had to escape from her country. Not allowed to enter the country even to visit her ailing parents, Nasrin lives in exile. The numerous awards she has received in Western countries have resulted in increased international attention to the struggle for women’s rights and freedom in the Middle East. Nasrin has received a UNESCO prize for the promotion of tolerance and nonviolence, the Simone de Beauvoir prize and Citizen of Honor award, both from France and the Prins Global Fellowship Award from New York University, among other awards. She has published “Shame Again,” “Bondini,” “Narir kono desh nei,” and “Dwikhandito.” For more information about her story, please visit www.taslimanasrin.com.

The Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows program, which is administered by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) in Washington, D.C., brings prominent artists, diplomats, journalists, business leaders, and other professionals to campuses across the United States for a week-long residential program of classes, seminars, workshops, lectures, and informal discussions. For 35 years, the Visiting Fellows have been introducing students and faculty members at liberal arts colleges to a wide range of perspectives on life, society, community, and achievement. The Visiting Fellows program is available to all four-year colleges and universities. For more information, visit CIC’s website at http://www.cic.edu/visitingfellows.

Established in 1991, the Allan R. Sharp Religion in Life Series brings to campus each fall semester distinguished performers and lecturers who focus on topics of practical Christian significance for the general public relating to contemporary issues. This lecture series was named in honor of Dr. Allan R. Sharp, professor emeritus of religion and philosophy, at the time of his retirement. The late Dr. Sharp served on the Barton College faculty from 1953 – 1991.

For additional information, please contact Dr. Rodney A. Werline, Marie and Leman Barnhill Endowed Chair in Religious Studies at Barton College, at 252-399-6447 or email: rawerline@barton.edu.

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Questions?  Please contact Kathy Daughety, director of public relations, at 252-399-6529 or email: kdaughety@barton.edu.

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