Courses: Current and Upcoming

Current Semester Courses

SPRING 2017

If you experience enrollment issues in HOMER with any of our courses, please let the instructor for that course know.

PHILOSOPHY

PHIL 10100-01 Introduction to Philosophy  1 HM HU LA TIDE TMBS3 creditsINSTRUCTOR: Frederik Kaufman, Rothschild Place 145, Ext. 41260, kaufmanf@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: None.
STUDENTS: Any.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: To introduce students to basic philosophical methods and problems. Topics to be covered include the existence/nonexistence of God, theory of knowledge, the mind/body problem, theories of moral obligation and social and political organization.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Three exams, final exam, class presentation and class participation.

PHIL 10100-02,-03 Introduction to Philosophy 1 HM HU LA TIDE TMBS
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Serge Grigoriev, Rothschild Place 142, Ext. 4-5713, sgrigoriev@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section
PREREQUISITES: None.
STUDENTS: Students from all disciplines are welcome. Expect willingness to engage in critical in-class discussion.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: The course introduces the students to the discipline by featuring a selection of classical readings and arguments pertaining to the problems of knowledge, morality, free will, individuality and authenticity.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Three exams; quizzes; participation.

PHIL 10100-04 Introduction to Philosophy 1 HM HU LA TIDE TMBS
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Dante Dauksz, Rothschild Place 134, Ext. 47382, ddauksz@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: None.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: The main goal of the course is to introduce students to the basic methods of philosophical reasoning: students will learn how to articulate their beliefs clearly and concisely, to critically analyze and evaluate arguments, construct and defend their own positions, and reason persuasively. These skills will be developed by introducing students to some of the main issues, theories and arguments in the following areas of philosophy: 1) The existence of God; 2) The nature and limits of knowledge; 3) The problem of freewill; 4) The nature of personal identity. In addition to providing an overview of the main issues involved in these four topics, we will also work to develop and improve your writing skills.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and Discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Two term-papers, 2 exams, class participation, 5 short answer assignments.

PHIL 10100-05,-06 Introduction to Philosophy 1 HM HU LA TIDE TMBS
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Jonathan Peeters, Rothschild Place 138, Ext. 43077, jpeeters@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section
PREREQUISITE: None.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will focus on perennial philosophical problems including: (1) Can I survive my death? (2) Am I free? (3) What is the relationship between the mind and the body? (4) Does God exist? (5) What ought we to do? We will read mostly contemporary philosophical works.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture with significant amounts of time devoted to discussion. The focus is on learning analytical philosophical skills.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Participation, reading/reading guides, short essay exams.

PHIL 10100-07,-08 Introduction to Philosophy 1 HM HU LA TIDE TMBS

PHIL 20300-01,-02 Introduction to Logic 2B LA NS QL

PHIL 20300-03 Introduction to Logic 2B HM LA NS QL TWOS
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Dante Dauksz, Rothschild Place 134, Ext. 47382, ddauksz@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities, sciences, or mathematics and passing score on math competency exam.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: The goal of this course is to introduce you to the techniques of modern symbolic logic so as to provide you with the necessary tools for evaluating deductively valid arguments. To that end, we will undertake a systematic study of propositional and predicate logic. Students will learn techniques for showing the validity or invalidity of arguments, the consistency and logical equivalence of sets of formulas and will learn how to test for the logical truth, falsity and contingency of individual formulas in systems of propositional and predicate logic.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and Discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Four exams, final exam, bi-weekly homework and class participation.

PHIL 21200-01 Introduction to Ethics 1 HM HU LA TIDE
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Frederik Kaufman, Rothschild Place 145, Ext. 41260, kaufmanf@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Introduction to the problems and theories of normative and critical ethics. Readings are selected from both classical and contemporary sources. We will consider a wide range of contemporary moral issues, such as abortion, war, capital punishment, the treatment of animals, and aid to the needy.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: 3 exams, final exam, short written assignments (class participation too); traditional grading.

PHIL 21200-02 Introduction to Ethics 1 HM HU LA TIDE
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Craig Duncan, Rothschild Place  144, Ext. 43580, cduncan@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course is an introduction to the philosophical study of ethics. We will examine such questions as: Is there such a thing as objective ethical truth, or is ethics just relative to a culture or even to an individual? If it can be objective, how are we supposed to know what is right and what is wrong? As part of this examination, we will look critically at several prominent philosophical attempts to supply an objective foundation to ethics—for example, attempts to found ethics on Virtue, or Reason, or God, or Happiness. We will also examine what implications these different approaches to ethics have for real-life moral dilemmas. 
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: papers, exams, participation.

PHIL 23000-01,-02 Bioethics 1 HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Tatiana Patrone, Rothschild Place 146, Ext. 47347, tpatrone@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section
PREREQUISITES: Sophomore standing or above.
STUDENTS: Interested students of all disciplines are welcome.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This is an introductory course in biomedical ethics. The developments in biomedical science that occurred in the course of the XX century have opened the door to some important philosophical problems: When – if at all – is it morally appropriate to terminate a pregnancy? Are doctors morally justified in helping patients to end their lives? Is it morally permissible to change the genetic make-up of our children? Is cloning morally objectionable? To what extent should the state be allowed to legislate over issues such as these? The course in bioethics is meant to acquaint you with some key arguments, perspectives, ideas, and positions that philosophers have developed concerning these questions. While the course does not promise to give simple answers to these questions, it will aim at helping you to acquire the philosophical skills necessary to develop such answers. You will learn how to read and to understand philosophical texts dealing with issues in bioethics, how to parse and to assess philosophical arguments, and how to come up with both critical and constructive arguments of your own.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture, discussion, group-work, debate.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Two exams (midterm and the final), research paper (10 pages long), weekly contributions to Sakai discussion board; grading based on the preceding requirements; attendance and participation will be taken into consideration.

PHIL 24000-01 Philosophy in Film 1 HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Serge Grigoriev, Rothschild Place 142, Ext. 45713, sgrigoriev@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or CNPH 10100; sophomore standing.
STUDENTS: Students from all disciplines are welcome. Expect willingness to engage in critical in-class discussion.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Problems in philosophy of film: realism, authorship, narration, evaluative criteria, and social significance of film.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and Discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Exams; quizzes; participation.

PHIL 26500-01 Philosophical Problems in Law HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Craig Duncan, Rothschild Place 144, Ext. 43580, cduncan@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in philosophy.
STUDENTS: All who meet the prerequisite are welcome.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Examination and evaluation of basic practices and principles of law, focusing on such topics as the nature of law and extent of legal liability; competing theories of constitutional interpretation; and the justification of punishment, including capital punishment. Examination of prominent legal cases and their underlying principles. Emphasis on philosophical analysis and moral evaluation.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture, and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Papers, exams, in-class debates; traditional grading.

PHIL 31100-01 Philosophy of Religion HU LA
3 CREDITS
INSTRUCTOR: Jonathan Peeters, Rothschild Place 138, Ext. 4-3077, jpeeters@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 15
PREREQUISITES: Two courses in philosophy, with at least one at level 2.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will focus on critically examining the supposed divine attributes, including omnipotence, omniscience, and omnibenevolence. Example topics include: (1) the possibility of being both omnipotent and essentially omnibenevolent; (2) the compatibility of divine foreknowledge and free will; (3) the problem of evil. Please note: PHIL-31100 is cross-listed with RLST-31100. Students may not earn credit for both PHIL-31100 and RLST-31100.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: This is a seminar class. That means that there is significant amounts of time set aside for discussion and debate. The focus is on working through topics in the philosophy of religion in the style of contemporary analytic philosophy.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Participation, reading/response papers, a research paper.

PHIL 35000-01 Philosophy of Science HU LA

PHIL 37510-01 Selected Topics in Philosophy: The Emotions  HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Frederik Kaufman, Rothschild Place 145, Ext. 41260, kaufmanf@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 15
PREREQUISITES: One course in philosophy; two additional courses in the humanities and/or social sciences.
STUDENTS:  Any who meet prerequisites or with permission of instructor.
COURSE DESCRIPTION:  Anger, love, fear, joy, disgust, pride, jealousy, shame, and many more—emotions; they can make our lives worth living, or sometimes not. But what are emotions? Are they simply feelings, judgments, behavior, or something else? Given their centrality to our lives, it is no surprise that philosophers have thought about them carefully. This course will examine the philosophy of emotion. We will consider what great historical philosophers, including Aristotle, Descartes, Spinoza, and Hume, have said about the emotions; we will read contemporary philosophical accounts of the emotions; and we will explore several specific emotions with an eye toward understanding their cognitive structures and their relationship to morality.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Two papers; weekly written commentaries; class participation.

PHIL 41000-01 Philosophy Capstone: The Philosophy of Immanuel Kant HU LA WI
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Tatiana Patrone, Rothschild Place 146, Ext. 47347, tpatrone@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 20
PREREQUISITES: WRTG 10600 or ICSM 108xx or ICSM 118xx; senior standing; restricted to philosophy majors, philosophy-religion majors, philosophy minors.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Serves as the capstone for philosophy majors and minors. Synthesizes students' experience in the program by having students apply the philosophical skills they have acquired in previous classes to a faculty-guided, largely independent research project on a prominent philosophical position, movement, or debate. Facilitates student reflection on achievements in both the major/minor and the Integrative Core Curriculum, and how these relate to personal intellectual formation while at Ithaca College. The focus of the course will be on the philosophy of Immanuel Kant (1724-1804). We will begin with his epistemology and metaphysics and trace his arguments vis-a-vis some of the central debates between the Modern empiricists and rationalists on the nature and the limits of human cognition. We will read Kant's Critique of Pure Reason and study concepts such as 'space', 'time', 'causality', 'freedom', and 'God'. We will then turn to Kant's ethical thought and read his Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals, in which he develops concepts such as 'autonomy', 'dignity', and 'respect for humanity'. The course will end with a discussion of Kant's political philosophy with the focus on concepts such as 'property', 'right', and 'contract'.

RELIGION

RLST 10500-01,-02 Introduction to World Religions: Indigenous and Eastern 1 G H HM HU LA 
3 credits 
INSTRUCTOR: Cynthia Hogan, Rothschild Place 110, Ext. 45155, chogan@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section 
PREREQUISITES: None. 
STUDENTS: Any.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Introduction to the academic study of religion by examining Native American and Asian religious systems. Topics to be explored include varying interpretations of divinity, shamanism, afterlife views, rituals, texts, material dimensions such as religious art and architecture, and contemporary expressions of Native American and Asian religious traditions.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Letter grade based on class discussions, written assignments, and exams.

RLST 10600-01,-02 Introduction To World Religions: Western And Modern 1 G H HU LA HM TIDE TMBS
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Nancy Menning, Rothschild Place 139, Ext. 45802, nmenning@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section
PREREQUISITES: None.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Introduces the academic study of religion through exploration of the origins, historical development, and thought and practice of the religious traditions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Emphasizes how religious beliefs and practices evolve in response to historic events and changing cultural contexts, including interactions with other religious traditions.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Letter grade based on exams, written assignments, and class participation.

RLST 20200-01 Religion and Society 1 G H HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Brian Karafin, Rothschild Place 109, Ext. 4-1585, karafin@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25 per section
PREREQUISITES: Sophomore standing or above, or one course in religion.
STUDENTS: Any interested.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course probes the dynamic interactions of religion and secular society in the contemporary world. Religion is often understood as a conservative political force in the United States—we will address this issue of the politics of religion by looking into the history of the “religious left” as a way to contest this assumption. Concrete examples will include: American religion and radical political movements in the nineteenth century; religion and the African-American civil rights movement; religion and pacifist resistance to war; religion and feminist theology; socially engaged Buddhism; Neopaganism and environmental activism.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures, class discussions, films.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings may include:
Susan Moon ed., Not Turning Away: The Practice of Engaged Buddhism;
Dan McKanan, Prophetic Encounters: Religion and the American Radical Tradition;
Albert Raboteau, American Prophets: Seven Religious Radicals and their Struggle for Social and Political Justice;
Rita Nakashima Brock and Rebecca Anne Parker, Proverbs of Ashes.
A-F; one third class participation, one third reading journals, one third final paper.

RLST 20300-01 Judaism 1 G H HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Rebecca Lesses, Muller Center 413, Ext. 4-3556, rlesses@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
STUDENTS: Students interested in religion, philosophy, and the study of diverse cultures.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course offers an introduction to Judaism as a religious civilization, with a focus on theology, ethics, and ritual practices. Readings include selected texts from the Biblical, rabbinic, medieval, and modern periods. Theological and ethical issues include God, good and evil, covenant, death and afterlife, justice and social responsibility. The course examines how these understandings are lived out through practices associated with birth and death, marriage and commitment, sexuality, and the life of study, prayer, and devotion. This semester we will especially focus on how Jewish life is lived in a variety of Jewish communities, Sephardic, Mizrahi (Jews from Arab countries), and Ashkenazic. Please note: This course is cross-listed with JWST-20300. Students may not receive credit for both JWST-20300 and RLST-20300.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures, discussions, visits to local synagogues, student presentations, and films.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Exams, papers, class presentations and participation; A-F.

RLST 24000-01,-02 Writing About Religion: Heaven and Hell 1 G HU LA WI
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Danielle Reuther-Wu, Rothschild Place 108, Ext. 45893, druetherwu@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 15
PREREQUISITES: WRTG 10600, ICSM 108xx, or ICSM 118xx.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Explores two thousand years of the history of heaven and hell with a focus on human meaning-making in religious practice, poetry, art, and digital media. Includes significant attention to the development of research and writing skills in the humanities.

RLST 25200-01 Introduction to Mysticism HU LA
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Brian Karafin, Rothschild Place 109, Ext. 41585, karafin@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
STUDENTS: Recommended for religious studies and philosophy/religion majors and minors. The course is open to all that are interested in a study of mysticism.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will be a philosophical and cultural inquiry into the topic of “Mysticism” understood as the human attempt to experience the ultimate nature of reality. We will probe a variety of representations of this dimension of human life in the context of its inter-relations with: a) the religious traditions of the West, b) the religious traditions of the East, c) contemporary longings for meaning and purpose, d) the search for alternative spiritualities.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Combination of lectures and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Possible readings:
Huston Smith, The Way Things Are;
Thomas Merton, Mystics and Zen Masters;
Sandra Ingerman, Soul Retrieval;
Rodger Kamenetz, The Jew in the Lotus.
Letter grade based on journals, exams, class participation.

RLST 27502-01 Selected Topics in Religion: Gender and Sexuality in Islam HU LA 
3 credits 
INSTRUCTOR: Kayla Wheeler, Rothschild Place 143, Ext. 47089, kwheeler1@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Students will explore how gender and sexuality within Islam have been constructed, negotiated, challenged, and policed primarily through interactions with religious texts, which have been used both to affirm and subvert gender norms. Additionally, this course will explore how increased contact with non-Muslims, as well as other types of Islams via colonialism, war, and globalization has prompted new conversations around gender and sexuality among Muslims. Using an intersectional approach, the course will also explore how race and ethnicity intersects with Islam in multiple ways, challenging the notion that there is one “proper” way to be a Muslim. Topics covered in this course include same-sex marriage, Islamic feminism, and trans* rights in Islam. No prior knowledge of Islam is required.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: 3 short papers and one final research paper. Grades are A-F.

RLST 27503-01 Selected Topics in Religion: History of Apocalypse HU LA 
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Rachel Wagner, Rothschild Place 111, Ext. 43249, rwagner@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this seminar, we will explore the Book of Revelation as a foundational text in order to see how its controversial portrait of ultimate endings has shaped religious and political thinking ever since. We will we begin with antiquity, as we focus in particular on views of time, representations of women, and views about conflict. We will then move to contemporary challenges in the form of Islamic apocalypticism, secular apocalypticism, and the mediation of apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic themes in popular culture (The Walking Dead; Falling Skies; You, Me, and the Apocalypse; World War Z, TheFallout series of videogames, etc.). We will end the course by exploring cosmopolitanism as an alternative perspective to the divisiveness of the apocalyptic vision.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminar-style discussion. 
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Short responses, take-home essays, and one focused research paper.

RLST 28100-01 Hinduism 1 G HU LA 
3 credits 
INSTRUCTOR: Angela Rudert, Rothschild Place 110, Ext. 45155, arudert@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One course in the humanities or social sciences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: A historical, textual and ethnographic based exploration of Hindu traditions, from ancient to global. Reading and discussion will focus on: sacred texts such as Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana, and devotional poetry; material religion such as icons, temples, music, and popular culture; and spiritual practices such as life cycle ritual, pilgrimage, and yogic disciplines. Special attention paid to Hindu diaspora and the globalization of Hindu traditions.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and discussion.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Participation, short written assignments, and a focused research project.

RLST 31100-01 Philosophy of Religion HU LA
3 CREDITS
INSTRUCTOR: Jonathan Peeters, Rothschild Place 138, Ext. 4-3077, jpeeters@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 15
PREREQUISITES: Two courses in philosophy, with at least one at level 2.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will focus on critically examining the supposed divine attributes, including omnipotence, omniscience, and omnibenevolence. Example topics include: (1) the possibility of being both omnipotent and essentially omnibenevolent; (2) the compatibility of divine foreknowledge and free will; (3) the problem of evil. Please note: PHIL-31100 is cross-listed with RLST-31100. Students may not earn credit for both PHIL-31100 and RLST-31100.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: This is a seminar class. That means that there is significant amounts of time set aside for discussion and debate. The focus is on working through topics in the philosophy of religion in the style of contemporary analytic philosophy.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Participation, reading/response papers, a research paper. 

RLST 37512-01 Selected Topics in Religion: Genesis in Myth & Fiction HU LA
3 credits 
INSTRUCTOR: Nancy Menning, Rothschild Place 139, Ext. 45802, nmenning@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 15
PREREQUISITES: One course in religion; two additional courses in the humanities and/or social sciences.
STUDENTS: This course will be of particular interest to students in religious studies, environmental studies, and writing (including screenwriting) who want to explore how the force of religious images and narratives can be effectively conveyed to modern secular and pluralistic audiences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Assesses the relevance of the mythic narratives in Genesis to 21st-century social and environmental challenges. Explores how and why these mythic narratives (the stories of creation, Noah’s ark, etc.) have been interpreted and rewritten within and across religious traditions as well as by secular and literary writers. A central focus will be on retellings of the Noah's Ark story, including analysis of how that story could be retold (in fiction or film) so as to enhance endangered species protection in the United States today.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion-oriented seminar.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Letter grade based on participation, written assignments, and creative projects.

RLST 41000-01 Religious Studies Capstone: Studying Religion in the Twenty-First Century HU LA WI
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR: Brian Karafin, Rothschild Place 109, Ext. 41585, karafin@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 20
PREREQUISITES: WRTG 10600 or ICSM 108xx or ICSM 118xx; at least three courses in religious studies with at least one course at the 300 or 400 level; senior standing.
STUDENTS: Philosophy/Religion Majors and Minors and Any Interested Others
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Serves as the capstone for philosophy/religious studies majors and religious studies minors. Synthesizes the student's experience in the program by drawing on key themes, issues, and movements in contemporary, global religious practice at an advanced level. Facilitates student reflection on achievements in both the major/minor and the Integrative Core Curriculum, and how these relate to personal intellectual formation while at Ithaca College. The Religious Studies Capstone will be a seminar in which participants will be reflecting together on the history and current situation of the academic study of Religion. The common reading will be a combination of classics in the field (such as Wilfrid Cantwell Smith’s writings on Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, and the study of religions generally) and contemporary major texts (e.g. Stephen Prothero’s God is Not One  and Jeffrey Kripal’s Esalen: America and the Religion of No-Religion) and the discussions will revolve around the role of religion in contemporary studies of the Humanities. Each student will choose an area of focus in the field of Religious Studies and conduct research in that area culminating in a classroom report and a final paper. Potential topics range across the wide field of Religious Studies, from particular traditions ( e.g. Santeria, Tantric Buddhism, Pentecostal Christianity, et al.) to figures from the past (Jesus, Buddha, Zoroaster, Nagarjuna, St. Bernard of Clairvaux) or present (Thomas Merton, Cornel West, Ted Cruz), to theoretical issues (Religion and Sexuality, Religion and Social Change, Religion and the end of Civilization). Throughout, the point will be to generate intellectually sophisticated discussions about the study of Religion and to give students an opportunity for research into a topic of particular interest to them.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminar-style discussions.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: A-F.
Readings May include:
Stephen Prothero, God is Not One;
Wilfrid Cantwell Smith, A Wilfrid Cantwell Smith Reader;
Leigh Schmidt, Restless Souls: The Making of American Spirituality;
Jeffrey Kripal, Esalen: America and the Religion of No-Religion.

 

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