After spending a year as a Franklin Fellow at the U.S. State Department, Todd Green, Luther College professor of religion, will discuss his experience at 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8, in Valders Hall of Science Room 206 on Luther's campus. Victoria Christman of Luther's Center for Ethics and Public Engagement will moderate the conversation.
The event, sponsored by the Center for Ethics and Public Engagement and the Luther Religion Department, is open to the public with no charge for admission.
The Franklin Fellows Program brings in professionals from the private and nonprofit sectors to advise on areas of new and emerging global concern. Green, a nationally recognized expert on Islamophobia, was asked to work in the Office of Policy and Global Issues in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, focusing on Islamophobia's impact on freedom of religion, human rights and countering violent extremism initiatives.
Among the topics discussed during the forum will be how the nature of Green's work changed in the transition from the Obama to the Trump administration, along with some of the basic tasks he performed at the State Department on a regular basis. Green will also discuss his experiences traveling to Europe on behalf of the State Department to address anti-Muslim discrimination as well as his invitation to speak on Islamophobia at the FBI Academy in Quantico and to representatives from the Interagency Countering Violent Extremism Task Force.
Green will also share his thoughts on the larger challenges of doing public scholarship on religion in the service of the U.S. government. This includes the difficulties of translating his area of expertise into language that could be heard and appropriated by government employees and officials who craft and implement foreign policy.
As a public scholar, Green writes regularly for The Huffington Post and has been interviewed by a variety of media outlets on Islamophobia, including CNN, NPR, Al Jazeera, France 24 and Reuters. His views on Islamophobia have also been cited by organizations such as the Council on Foreign Relations, the Center for American Progress and the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Green is the author of "The Fear of Islam: An Introduction to Islamophobia in the West." The book surveys the history of anti-Muslim prejudice in Europe and the United States and addresses the political and cultural factors contributing to the rise of Islamophobia in the post-9/11 era.
At Luther, Green teaches in the area of U.S. and European religious history as well as interfaith dialogue. He also leads a study abroad course in which students travel to a variety of European countries to study the political and cultural debates surrounding the place of Muslim minority communities.
A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,050, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in more than 60 majors and pre-professional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: http://www.luther.edu.