2018-2019 Catalog

RELS 250 Critical Approaches to the Study of Religion

What is Religious Studies?  Students in this course will answer this question first by tracing the historical formation of the academic study of religion (from monasteries to the university), and across various disciplines (sociology, psychology, anthropology, history, economics, etc.). We will then engage more deeply with the various theoretical and methodological tools available to scholars of religion by reading a range of scholarly works that illustrate these approaches and by giving students the opportunity to practice some of these approaches. In the end, students will become familiar with the landscape of the academic study of religion, will be able to assess the value and limitations of different scholarly approaches to the study of religion, and will have cultivated skills necessary to participate in conversations in the field.  Required for Religious Studies majors and minors, recommended in the Sophomore or Junior year.


4 units