Thursday, 28 November 2013

Hello from Oslo - part 1

 We - at least most of us - made it to the Norwegian capital and today (well, actually 'yesterday') we had our first lectures in the Contemporary course. Among others our professor for Judaism showed a small part of the Hanukkah ritual, as today is the start of the Jewish feast - never a dull moment in RRE classes!

The evening brought a visit to Minhaj Ul Quran, an Islamic center here in Oslo. Our very own student Nasir gave us a tour through the center and we were treated to a yummy (and spicy) dinner. A great night! Now the light is going out in the girls' hostel room - tomorrow we'll study Christianity and (more) Islam. Good night! 

A modern proverb on the wall.

Our guide Nasir

The Imam of the center at the lovely dinner.

RRE students in dialogue with the Imam

Nasir presenting a book by the founder of the Minhaj Ul Quran - a fatwa condemning suicide bombings and terrorism

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Heia Oslo!

As I’m for the moment the only writer for the blog, this blog’s focus will be on the fourth RRE cycle, as that’s my study year. (Fifth cycle, do something about this! Let me know if you want to write for the blog, even if it’s just four times a year or so.)

So, what’s up with the fourth cycle? Well, most of us are preparing for a trip towards Norway’s capital, Oslo. From Wednesday to Saturday, we will have lectures in our compulsory course ‘The Three Religions in Contemporary Perspective’. Apart from work in the classroom, we will also visit a mosque and a synagogue – that is verily a contemporary perspective! 

It will also be our last official compact seminar, which could be a good moment for nostalgic reflections on how time has the awful tendency to fly…but let’s leave that for another blog. Sigh.

Instead, hereby a few ‘did-you-know-that’s’ about our destination and the RRE seminar for the coming week. Thanks be to Wikipedia.

Did you know that…

-          Oslo was founded around 1000 CE? (Alas, too late to be a study subject for RRE.)
-          Oslo was known by the beautiful name of Kristiania from the 17th century until 1925?
-          Everybody has been telling me that Norway is so extremely expensive that I have already bought instant noodles to take with me?
-          You can see ‘The Scream’ by Edvard Munch in Oslo’s Munch Museum?
-          Norway’s capital has about 620.000 inhabitants?
-          There is one (brave) student in the 4th cycle in Oslo?
-          Norwegian and Swedish are so similar that it works to send a mail to the hostel where we will stay in Swedish?  
-          You might then actually have to read the mail three times to understand it?
-          Oslo yearly gives away large Christmas trees to several big cities in the world? A fun tradition, I think!
-          Oslo houses the National Theater, which is Norway’s largest theater?
-          The weather might bring anything from -2 to 7 Celsius during our stay? (


Monday, 11 November 2013

Last Open Lecture of the Term!

On Wednesday November 20th, the RRE Lund program will host its last RRE Open Lecture of this term. Within the theme – ‘Fearing the Other’ – fear for Judaism and Christianity have already been considered, so now it is time for Islamophobia.
The Lecture is titled "The Swedish Political Construction of a Contested Concept" and will be given by Johan Cato, PhD, who recently finished his dissertation ('When Islam Became Swedish'
) on the way in which Islam and Muslims have been discussed an presented within Swedish media and politics in the past decades. 

A highly actual and relevant topic!

Time: 6.15 PM, room 118. Like last time, the discussion might be continued in some pub, while enjoying a beer or a plate of nachos...

Come all!