About the Dwight H. Terry Lectureship

The Dwight H. Terry Lectureship,

also known as the Terry Lectures, invites preeminent scholars in religion, the sciences and philosophy to address issues concerning the ways in which science and philosophy inform religion and religion’s application to human welfare. The lectures are typically four in number and are usually delivered over two weeks. Established in 1905 by a gift from Dwight Harrington Terry of Bridgeport, Connecticut, it is among Yale’s most distinguished lectureships and has yielded important and enduring books, which are published by Yale University Press.

The deed of gift establishing the Lectureship declares that:

… the object of this foundation is not the promotion of scientific investigation and discovery, but rather the assimilation and interpretation of that which has been or shall be hereafter discovered, and its application to human welfare, especially by the building of the truths of science and philosophy into the structure of a broadened and purified religion. The founder believes that such a religion will greatly stimulate intelligent effort for the improvement of human conditions and the advancement of the race in strength and excellence of character. To this end it is desired that a series of lectures be given by men eminent in their respective departments, on ethics, the history of civilization and religion, biblical research, all sciences and branches of knowledge which have an important bearing on the subject, all the great laws of nature, especially of evolution … also such interpretations of literature and sociology as are in accord with the spirit of this foundation, to the end that the Christian spirit may be nurtured in the fullest light of the world’s knowledge and that mankind may be helped to attain its highest possible welfare and happiness upon this earth.

The Dwight H. Terry Lectureship Committee

is convened by Kimberly M. Goff-Crews, secretary and vice president for university life, and is composed of Yale University professors in religious studies, philosophy, and the sciences along with the director and executive editor of the Yale University Press. The following individuals comprise the 2022-2023 committee:

Deborah Coen (Chair)
Professor of History and of the History of Science and Medicine

Priyamvada Natarajan (Vice Chair)
Professor of Astronomy and Physics
Director, Franke Program in Science and the Humanities

Jean Thomson Black
Senior Executive Editor, Yale University Press

Sarah Demers
Professor of Physics

Seth Ditchik
Editorial Director, Yale University Press 

Paul Franks
Robert F. and Patricia Weis Professor of Philosophy and Judaic Studies
Professor of Religious Studies
Chair Philosophy

Frank Griffel
Professor of Religious Studies
Chair, Department of Religious Studies

Laura Nasrallah
Buckingham Professor of New Testament Criticism and Interpretation

Thomas Near
Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Bingham Oceanographic Curator of Ichthyology, Peabody Museum of Natural History
Chair, Department of E
cology and Evolutionary Biology
Head of College, Saybrook College

Brandon Ogbunu
Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Joanna Radin
Associate Professor of History of Medicine

Gregory E. Sterling
Reverend Henry L. Slack Dean of Yale Divinity School
Lillian Claus Professor of New Testament 

Please refer all inquiries regarding the Lectureship to Julia Hsieh, Chief of Staff, Office of the Secretary and Vice President for University Life.