When Jane Stranz of the World Council of Churches emailed me a link to her blog about me, I thought I should mention something here that is already out there on the web. The Conference of European Churches in Geneva has awarded its John Templeton Award for the European Religion Writer of the Year 2006 to yours truly.
The award was for articles on the Atlas of Creation, a Muslim creationist book by Harun Yahya (left) that was mysteriously distributed for free in Turkey (and later more widely in Europe), Vienna imam Sheikh Adnan Ibrahim who says yes to Europe but no to Euro-Islam and a French comic book by René Pétillon called The Headscarf Affair (right) that spoofs the debate about Muslim headscarves.
At the award ceremony in Paris this week, I gave a short speech about the problems international religion writers face when struggling to express untranslatable foreign words and concepts in English. Since much of our reporting and research is done in foreign languages, this is a constant challenge. Ecumenical News International has a short item on the speech and the text.
With Muslim women’s headgear becoming a political issue in some European countries, do you think journalists in these countries are right to adopt words like hijab or niqab as better terms to use than headscarf or veil?