(February 20, 2008)

Contact: Rick DelaHaya, Centenary News Services, 318.869.5073

Centenary College's Forum Presents 'Value and Virtue' Series

SHREVEPORT, La. — The Forum, an annual event that examines a social issue in open-to-the public sessions, will address "Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe" during a two-part public series beginning February 25 at Centenary College.

Forum poster

Philosopher and author Erik Wielenberg, associate professor of philosophy at DePauw University, will discuss the issue of virtue, value and atheism beginning at 7 p.m. in the Kilpatrick Auditorium on the College campus.

According to his book of the same name, Wielenberg's premise is "Suppose there is no God." This might imply that human life is meaningless, that there are no moral obligations and hence people can do whatever they want, and that the notions of virtue and vice and good and evil have no place. Erik J. Wielenberg believes this view to be mistaken and in this book he explains why. He argues that even if God does not exist, human life can have meaning, we do have moral obligations, and virtue is possible. Naturally, the author sees virtue in a Godless universe as different from virtue in a Christian universe, and he develops naturalistic accounts of humility, charity, and hope. The moral landscape in a Godless universe is different from the moral landscape in a Christian universe, but it does indeed exist. Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe is a tour of some of the central landmarks of this under-explored territory.

The Forum will then present students and citizens responding on March 3, also at 7 p.m. in Kilpatrick Auditorium. Students include Jason Blillie, philosophy major; and Travis Hill, religious studies and communications major. The Shreveport Times Citizen Editorial Board responders include David Burroughs, environmental engineer; and Roy Fish, community member.

Dr. Chris Ciocchetti, assistant professor of philosophy, coordinates the annual event, which presents opposing points of view and then features responses from students and members of The (Shreveport) Times Citizen Editorial Board, as well as audience questions.

For instance, from the Feb 23 Times:

Both events are free and open to the public. For further information, contact Ciocchetti at 318.869.5246 or email or visit the Forum web page at www.centenary.edu/forum.

About Us

Centenary College of Louisiana is a private, four-year arts and sciences college affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest chartered liberal arts college west of the Mississippi River and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Centenary is one of 16 colleges and universities constituting the Associated Colleges of the South and is regularly rated as one of the top colleges in the South. In 2008 Centenary College celebrates 100 years in Shreveport and Bossier City.