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Ingolf Dalferth Named New Danforth Chair in Religion

Monday, November 19, 2007

Ingolf Darferth, a friend and colleague of D.Z. Phillips, has been named as Phillips’ successor as the Danforth Professor of Philosophy of Religion at Claremont Graduate University. Dalferth is set to begin teaching beginning in Spring semester of 2008.

As the Danforth Chair, Dalferth will teach in Claremont each spring, and then work with students during the remainder of the year from his home in Switzerland, where he also teaches Religious Philosophy at the University of Zurich. His courses will include Calvin’s God, Kant’s Philosophy of Religion and Kirkegaard’s Works of Love.

Dalferth’s appointment was made in part due to his close relationship with Phillips, who passed away last July in Swansea, Wales at the age of 71 while working on research. Phillips was endeared among colleagues and former students as being controversial, and was considered one of the world’s leaders in philosophy of religion.

“Among the reasons I took the Chair was because of the pluralism, diversity, and interreligious dialogue that exists at Claremont’s School of Religion,” Dalferth said. “The school’s interest in inter-and transdisciplinary activities as an integral part of philosophy of religion is very appealing; and above all the privilege to succeed the late D.Z. Phillips. We had been close colleagues for many years, and his contemplative approach to philosophy of religion is close to the hermeneutical strand of my own philosophy of orientation, which has grown out of my interest in the analytical, phenomenological and hermeneutical traditions of 20th century philosophy.”

Presently, Dalferth is writing a book on contemporary hermeneutics of religion, leading an interdisciplinary research group on Religion and Emotion, and is engaged in a research group on the foundations of human social behavior.


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