Thursday, December 9, 2010

Mark Twain and Lionel Twain: Shall the Twain Ever Meet?

Last month at the Southern Economic Association Annual Meetings, Doug and I organized a panel discussion on Christianity and Individual and Collective Action. We had some great panelists: two economists (Doug and Dan Hungerman of Notre Dame) and two "theological" representatives (Craig Blomberg of Denver Seminary and Charles McDaniel of Baylor University). Doug is going to be writing-up a summary of some of his thoughts, which we can report later. My hope is that we can report similar reactions from the other panel members. We had some great discussions about things such as American culture and religious activity and the role of wealth and material possessions for the modern Christian.

But what I wanted to talk about here is the audience. We had, by my count, about 35 people who were not panel members. If you've ever been to a convention like the SEA, with numerous parallel sessions, we couldn't help but being pleased, especially as this was not a typical topic for an economics convention. I know we had some people who just saw the title and came in. Several people from the audience brought up great questions. I've had much good feedback from people over the idea of this session attempting to bring together religious and economic thinking. I'm glad that Doug is going to circulate his thoughts from the session, I think it's a useful next step to keep the discussion going.

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