Religion scholar Huston Smith to speak May 3

The Center for the Study of Ethics and Human Values will present “A Conversation With Huston Smith” at 11 a.m. May 3 in the Women’s Building Formal Lounge.

Smith, who taught philosophy in Arts & Sciences at WUSTL from 1947-1958, is a renowned scholar of world religions.

The author of 14 books, he is perhaps best-known for The World’s Religions (published in 1958 as The Religions of Man), a still-widely used textbook that has sold more than 2 million copies and has been translated into 12 languages.

The forum will be moderated by Beata Grant, Ph.D., professor and director of Religious Studies and professor of Chinese, both in Arts & Sciences. Dedication of the Huston Smith Meditation Garden, located on the north side of Graham Chapel, will immediately follow.

In 2001, Smith’s Why Religion Matters won the Wilbur Award for the best book on religion. In 1996, Bill Moyers devoted a five-part PBS special, The Wisdom of Faith With Huston Smith, to his life and work.

Smith’s own film documentaries on Hinduism, Tibetan Buddhism and Sufism have all won international awards, while The Journal of Ethnomusicology lauded his discovery of Tibetan multiphonic chanting as “an important landmark in the study of music.”

Smith is the emeritus Thomas J. Watson Professor of Religion and Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Philosophy at Syracuse University. He previously served as professor of philosophy at Massachusetts Institute of Technology for 15 years.

Most recently, he served as a visiting professor of religious studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

The forum and dedication are free and open to the public. For more information, call 935-9358.