Keynote: Catherine Wessigner on the Cult Narrative and the Branch Davidians

Join us this Thursday, May 3rd for a talk led by Loyola University New Orleans’ Professor Catherine Wessinger! 

Catherine Wessinger, the Rev. H. James Yamauchi, S.J. Professor of the History of Religions at Loyola University New Orleans, will speak this May 3rd at Grainger Hall. Wessinger will present her research on the media’s depiction of the Branch Davidian community.  Twenty-five years ago this April 19th, seventy six Branch Davidians died in a tank and tear gas assault on their home in Mount Carmel. The massive lose of life followed a 51-day FBI siege in which public attention revolved around the “cult” leader David Koresh. Wessinger argues that sensationalized reporting on the Branch Davidians contributed to their dehumanization, and ultimately their deaths.

Wessinger’s lastest article on the siege: “The deaths of 76 Branch Davidians in April 1993 could have been avoided – so why didn’t anyone care?”

“Inside Mount Carmel” tapes (mentioned in the article)