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Norman Girardot

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Smiles and Whispers: Nostalgic Reflections on Mircea Eliade's Significance for the Study of Religions

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Norman Girardot has been full professor in the Religious Studies Department of Lehigh University in Pennsylvania since 1989. He took his MA and PhD degrees at the University of Chicago, of which he is a fellow, in 1968 and 1974 when Eliade taught there. He was Eliade's secretary for several years.

Professor Girardot is a specialist in Chinese religions being the author of Myth and Meaning in Early Taoism (University of California Press, 1983) as well as the special editor for China of The HarperCollins Dictionary of Religions, edited by Jonathan Z. Smith and William Scott Green (SanFransisco: Harper, 1995), to which Prof. Girardot contributed 34 entries on China. He also contributed five entries to The Macmillan Encyclopedia of Religion, (New York: Macmillan, 1987) of which Eliade was the editor-in-chief, including entries on "Chaos," and "Marcel Granet" as well as three entries on Chinese religion.

Prof. Girardot's work on Eliade includes the organization of a national conference at the University of Notre Dame in 1978 on "Coincidentia-Oppositorum: the Scholarly and Literary Worlds of Mircea Eliade." This resulted in the publication of Imagination and Meaning: the scholarly and literary worlds of Mircea Eliade (New York: the Seabury Press, 1982), edited by Girardot and Mac Linscott Ricketts, to which Prof. Girardot contributed the preface and "Imagining Eliade: a fondness for squirrels," (pp. 1-16).

Prof. Girardot also claims responsibility for a series of eight "Prankish and Quasi-Shamanic Productions of Public Ritual Events" including most recently the Lehigh University First Presleyterian Church of Elvis the Divine Revival in April 1996 which was featured in an article in the ReligiousStudies News (vol. 11, no. 4, Nov. 1996).