Air date: July 2013
We know you've already seen this, but if you've suffered a horrible bout of amnesia in the last month or so, let's recap. Reza Aslan has written a thoughtful, historical examination of Jesus's life, entitled Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. Dr. Aslan holds a Ph.D in religious studies and is a noted scholar of multiple religions. Fox News host Laura Green had little use for Aslan's credentials. Green spent 10 minutes unraveling an issue that was confusing only to her: How could a Muslim write a book about Jesus?
To Aslan's credit, he kept his cool and attempted to lay down some basic ideas about scholarship, including the way that books are written, how scholars become experts in their field, and how their personal life has little to do with the quality of their work. It seems that Green missed out on the obligatory "death of the author" lecture in her Intro to Literature seminar in undergrad.
The lesson that we can take away from all of this is that you should pay attention in your English seminars or you might just find yourself an Internet laughingstock. Rather than rotting your mind with Green's assertion one more time, go ahead and watch Aslan's thoughts on the interview he shared with Piers Morgan or his thoughtful discussion with John Oliver on The Daily Show. Oliver illustrates just how great an interview can be when a host decides to read the work of their guest before they arrive. Also, Aslan actually has an opportunity to talk about his book in these two interviews, which is nice.