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Pluralism, Prejudice, and the Promise of America

Eboo Patel comes to campus April 9 for the President’s Speaker Series

All too often, pundits and politicians invoke the specter of Islam as a menacing and anti-American force. What is the solution to the problem of alarmist, hateful rhetoric, once relegated to the fringes, that has now become frighteningly mainstream? Can the forces of pluralism defeat the forces of prejudice?

On April 9, author and scholar Eboo Patel will share his thoughts during the final lecture of this year’s President’s Speaker Series.

Eboo Patel is the founder and executive director of the Interfaith Youth Core, a Chicago-based institution building the global interfaith youth movement. He was appointed by President Obama to the Advisory Council of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Initiatives, where he is working to realize the president's priority of interfaith cooperation.

Released in 2012, his newest book, Sacred Ground: Pluralism, Prejudice, and the Promise of America is a history of American religious integration. It tells how, despite the current politically motivated anti-Muslim fervor, America's history of tolerance and eventual integration will prevail with Muslim Americans as well. He is also the author of Acts of Faith: The Story of an American Muslim, the Struggle for the Soul of a Generation.

Patel holds a doctorate in the sociology of religion from Oxford University, where he studied on a Rhodes scholarship. He writes “The Faith Divide,” a featured blog on religion for the Washington Post and has also written for the Harvard Divinity School Bulletin, the Chicago Tribune, and many other media outlets.

The event will be followed by a book signing. Staff and faculty can get discounted tickets for $20, available online.

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