Carol Delaney

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Carol Delaney received an MTS from Harvard Divinity School and a PhD in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Chicago and is a graduate of Boston University. She was the assistant director of the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard, and a visiting professor in the Department of Religious Studies at Brown University. She is now a professor emerita at Stanford University and a research scholar at Brown University.  Delaney is the author of several books, including The Seed and the Soil: Gender and Cosmology in Turkish Village Society, Abraham on Trial: The Social Legacy of Biblical MythNaturalizing Power: Essays in Feminist Cultural Criticism, and Investigating Culture: An Experiential Introduction to Anthropology.

Courtesy of Frank Mullin

Books by this Author

“One of the 100 best books of the year.” —The Times Literary SupplementFive hundred years after he set sail, Columbus is still a controversial figure in history. Debates portray him either as the hero in the great drama of discovery or as an avaricious glory hunter and ruthless destroyer of indigenous cultures. In Columbus and the Quest for Jerusalem, Carol Delaney offers a radically new interpretation of the man and his mission, claiming that the true motivation for his voyages is still widely...

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Columbus and the Quest for Jerusalem

Carol Delaney depicts Christopher Columbus to have been neither a greedy imperialist nor a quixotic adventurer, as often seen in the prism of present-day perspectives, but as a man driven by an abiding religious passion.

My Life in 8 Words

Author Revealed

Q. What is your motto or maxim?

A. follow your heart

Q. How would you describe perfect happiness?

A. I doubt there is such a thing.  Instead, I think a better goal is to be able to wake up in the morning and be content or pleased with what you have done with the hand you've been dealt and to keep going hopefully.

Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

A. I would be right where I am now -- or, possibly Turkey where I did anthropological fieldwork and where I have many friends. Besides the food is fantastic, the country beautiful and the people friendly.

Q. What’s your greatest fear?

A. Besides airplanes [though I fly a fair amount], I guess it is not being able to do some things I still want to do, not to be around to see what my daughter and grandsons do with their lives.

Q. What’s your fantasy profession?

A. A guide through the Grand Canyon - rafting or hiking

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