Sections

« Fall 2017 Spring 2018

RELI0100A-S18

CRN: 21657

Introduction to Religion
Introduction to Religion
Religion has always been a significant element in human life and history. Why is this? What roles does religion play in peoples’ lives and societies? Are there deeper commonalities underlying various religious traditions, despite their external differences? And what is religion anyway? We will examine these questions by introducing the basic vocabulary and analytic tools of the academic study of religion—a modern discipline stemming from the ideals of the Enlightenment—and by examining multiple case studies, both Western and Asian. We will also discuss multiple ways, sympathetic or critical, that influential thinkers make sense of religion in modern times. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0100W-S18

CRN: 22405

Introduction to Religion
Discussion
Introduction to Religion
Religion has always been a significant element in human life and history. Why is this? What roles does religion play in peoples’ lives and societies? Are there deeper commonalities underlying various religious traditions, despite their external differences? And what is religion anyway? We will examine these questions by introducing the basic vocabulary and analytic tools of the academic study of religion—a modern discipline stemming from the ideals of the Enlightenment—and by examining multiple case studies, both Western and Asian. We will also discuss multiple ways, sympathetic or critical, that influential thinkers make sense of religion in modern times. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0100X-S18

CRN: 22406

Introduction to Religion
Discussion
Introduction to Religion
Religion has always been a significant element in human life and history. Why is this? What roles does religion play in peoples’ lives and societies? Are there deeper commonalities underlying various religious traditions, despite their external differences? And what is religion anyway? We will examine these questions by introducing the basic vocabulary and analytic tools of the academic study of religion—a modern discipline stemming from the ideals of the Enlightenment—and by examining multiple case studies, both Western and Asian. We will also discuss multiple ways, sympathetic or critical, that influential thinkers make sense of religion in modern times. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0100Y-S18

CRN: 22407

Introduction to Religion
Discussion
Introduction to Religion
Religion has always been a significant element in human life and history. Why is this? What roles does religion play in peoples’ lives and societies? Are there deeper commonalities underlying various religious traditions, despite their external differences? And what is religion anyway? We will examine these questions by introducing the basic vocabulary and analytic tools of the academic study of religion—a modern discipline stemming from the ideals of the Enlightenment—and by examining multiple case studies, both Western and Asian. We will also discuss multiple ways, sympathetic or critical, that influential thinkers make sense of religion in modern times. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0100Z-S18

CRN: 22408

Introduction to Religion
Discussion
Introduction to Religion
Religion has always been a significant element in human life and history. Why is this? What roles does religion play in peoples’ lives and societies? Are there deeper commonalities underlying various religious traditions, despite their external differences? And what is religion anyway? We will examine these questions by introducing the basic vocabulary and analytic tools of the academic study of religion—a modern discipline stemming from the ideals of the Enlightenment—and by examining multiple case studies, both Western and Asian. We will also discuss multiple ways, sympathetic or critical, that influential thinkers make sense of religion in modern times. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0123A-S18

CRN: 22174

Buddhist Tradition in EastAsia
The Buddhist Tradition in East Asia
An introduction to the development of Buddhism within the East Asian cultural sphere of China, Korea, and Japan. We will consider continuities of thought, institution, and practice with the Indian Buddhist tradition as well as East Asian innovations, particularly the rise of the Chan/Zen and Pure Land schools. (Follows RELI 0121 but may be taken independently) 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0123X-S18

CRN: 22409

Buddhist Tradition in EastAsia
Discussion
The Buddhist Tradition in East Asia
An introduction to the development of Buddhism within the East Asian cultural sphere of China, Korea, and Japan. We will consider continuities of thought, institution, and practice with the Indian Buddhist tradition as well as East Asian innovations, particularly the rise of the Chan/Zen and Pure Land schools. (Follows RELI 0121 but may be taken independently) 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0123Y-S18

CRN: 22410

Buddhist Tradition in EastAsia
Discussion
The Buddhist Tradition in East Asia
An introduction to the development of Buddhism within the East Asian cultural sphere of China, Korea, and Japan. We will consider continuities of thought, institution, and practice with the Indian Buddhist tradition as well as East Asian innovations, particularly the rise of the Chan/Zen and Pure Land schools. (Follows RELI 0121 but may be taken independently) 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0123Z-S18

CRN: 22411

Buddhist Tradition in EastAsia
Discussion
The Buddhist Tradition in East Asia
An introduction to the development of Buddhism within the East Asian cultural sphere of China, Korea, and Japan. We will consider continuities of thought, institution, and practice with the Indian Buddhist tradition as well as East Asian innovations, particularly the rise of the Chan/Zen and Pure Land schools. (Follows RELI 0121 but may be taken independently) 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0228A-S18

Cross-Listed As:
JAPN0228A-S18

CRN: 22176

Japanese Religions
Japanese Religions
We will begin our study of Japanese religions with the ancient mythology that forms the basis of Shinto (the way of the kami, or gods). We will then consider the introduction of Buddhism, Confucianism, and Daoism to Japan and examine how these traditions were accepted, absorbed, and adapted. We will also investigate Japanese reactions to Christianity in the 16th century and the appearance of "new" Japanese religions starting in the 19th century. Throughout, we will ask how and why Japanese have both adhered to tradition and been open to new religions. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0243A-S18

CRN: 21972

Hindu Ethics
Hindu Ethics AT, ET *
What constitutes the good life? How is morality established? Who are the arbiters of virtuous conduct? Such questions will guide us as we probe the complexities of ethics in Hindu religious life. We will identify how such notions as /dharma/, caste, karma, /moks?a/, purity, and nonviolence have shaped the development of Hindu moral consciousness. We will do so through readings of orthodox Hindu ethical texts (/dharma sastra/), ethnographic explorations of moral identity, considerations of holistic medicine (Ayurveda), theological visions of protecting the environment, and modern reform movements headed by Gandhi and Ambedkar. With increased sensitivity we will more deeply understand Hindu moral identities while considering our own ethical determinations. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0248A-S18

CRN: 22305

Religion & Class in South Asia
Religion and Class in South Asia
In this course we will examine the shifting religious landscapes of South Asia in relationship to “new middle classes” in Nepal, India, and Pakistan. We will begin by defining class in contemporary South Asia and then consider ethnographic examples of how class is reshaping religious communities, identities, values, and practices among Hindus and Muslims. Special attention will be given to shifts in practices related to gender and caste, media (television, film, and comic books), fashion, food, and leisure in order to expand our definitions of what “counts” as religion in the modern world. 3 hrs. lect.

RELI0256A-S18

CRN: 22299

Islam and Judaism
Islam and Judaism
In this course we will compare and contrast the histories, practices, and beliefs of Islam and Judaism. Our source materials will include scriptural and post-scriptural texts, as well as representative selections from religious polemics of both the pre-modern and modern periods. We will also watch a number of documentary films on the topic. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

RELI0290A-S18

Cross-Listed As:
GSFS0290A-S18

CRN: 22177

Women and the Sacred
Women and the Sacred in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
This course will explore the female religious experience in Greco-Roman antiquity and Early Christianity. We shall trace the transition from the mystery religions of Demeter and Isis in the Eastern Mediterranean to the cult of Mary the Mother of God (Theotokos) and the worship of female saints. Drawing on a wide range of sources (hymns, saints' Lives, Apocryphal Gospels, Patristic texts, and icons), we shall study the varieties of female devotion and examine the roles available to women in the early Church: deaconesses and desert mothers, monastics and martyrs, poets and rulers. Different theoretical approaches will enable us to ask a series of questions: were women in the early Church considered capable of holiness? To what extent did the female 'gifts of the spirit' challenge church authority? What is distinct about the feminine experience of the divine? Finally, we shall consider the vision and poetics of female spirituality in select modern poets. 3 hrs. lect.

RELI0290Y-S18

Cross-Listed As:
GSFS0290Y-S18

CRN: 22412

Women and the Sacred
Dicussion
Women and the Sacred in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
This course will explore the female religious experience in Greco-Roman antiquity and Early Christianity. We shall trace the transition from the mystery religions of Demeter and Isis in the Eastern Mediterranean to the cult of Mary the Mother of God (Theotokos) and the worship of female saints. Drawing on a wide range of sources (hymns, saints' Lives, Apocryphal Gospels, Patristic texts, and icons), we shall study the varieties of female devotion and examine the roles available to women in the early Church: deaconesses and desert mothers, monastics and martyrs, poets and rulers. Different theoretical approaches will enable us to ask a series of questions: were women in the early Church considered capable of holiness? To what extent did the female 'gifts of the spirit' challenge church authority? What is distinct about the feminine experience of the divine? Finally, we shall consider the vision and poetics of female spirituality in select modern poets. 3 hrs. lect.

RELI0290Z-S18

Cross-Listed As:
GSFS0290Z-S18

CRN: 22415

Women and the Sacred
Discussion
Women and the Sacred in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
This course will explore the female religious experience in Greco-Roman antiquity and Early Christianity. We shall trace the transition from the mystery religions of Demeter and Isis in the Eastern Mediterranean to the cult of Mary the Mother of God (Theotokos) and the worship of female saints. Drawing on a wide range of sources (hymns, saints' Lives, Apocryphal Gospels, Patristic texts, and icons), we shall study the varieties of female devotion and examine the roles available to women in the early Church: deaconesses and desert mothers, monastics and martyrs, poets and rulers. Different theoretical approaches will enable us to ask a series of questions: were women in the early Church considered capable of holiness? To what extent did the female 'gifts of the spirit' challenge church authority? What is distinct about the feminine experience of the divine? Finally, we shall consider the vision and poetics of female spirituality in select modern poets. 3 hrs. lect.

RELI0297A-S18

Cross-Listed As:
JWST0297A-S18

CRN: 22284

Middle East Political Religion
Middle Eastern Political Religion
Since the Iranian Revolution of 1979 and the rise of Religious Zionism in Israel, Middle Eastern politics and religion have become inextricably linked. In this course we examine the relationship between politics and religion in the Arab states, Israel, and Iran. Readings include selections from the scriptures of the monotheistic traditions, historical accounts of religious and political change, and theoretical analyses of historical trends. Throughout the term we will follow news accounts of current developments in the Middle East. 3 hrs. lect.

RELI0320A-S18

Cross-Listed As:
PHIL0320A-S18

CRN: 22178

Seminar in Buddhist Philosophy
Seminar in Buddhist Philosophy: Yogacara Depth Psychology and Philosophy of Mind
In this seminar we will survey the basic ideas of Yogacara Buddhism (4-6th c. CE), one of two major schools of Indian Buddhism, in relation to cognitive science and philosophy of mind. We will examine these ideas historically, philosophically and comparatively. We focus on the Yogacara analyses of the largely unconscious ‘construction of reality’ and its systematic deconstruction through forms of analytic meditation. We will read primary and secondary texts on Indian Buddhism and texts espousing similar ideas in modern philosophy and the social and cognitive sciences. (one course on philosophy or RELI 0120, RELI 0220, RELI 0223, RELI 0224, RELI 0225, RELI 0226, RELI 0227or RELI 0228.) 3 hrs. sem.

RELI0335A-S18

CRN: 22179

Roman Catholicism
Roman Catholicism WT
Topic is determined by the instructor - refer to section for the course description.

RELI0350A-S18

CRN: 22180

Mystical Tradition of Islam
Sufism: The Mystical Tradition of Islam
In this seminar, we will start our adventure in the Sufi world by focusing on the historical and religious contexts in which the mystical tradition of Islam developed during the early Islamic centuries. We will then turn to the so-called classical period focusing on the institutionalization of Sufism, major themes of the classical Sufi literature; fundamental teachings and practices of Sufis; and important figures like Rumi, Ibn Arabi, and Hafez. Finally, we will move to the modern period to discuss the ways in which the Sufi tradition has been re-interpreted, contested, or transformed throughout the Muslim world in response to the challenges of modernity. In all this, our main concern will be to develop an understanding of the mystical perspective that has influenced the outlook of much of the world's diverse Muslim population. Requires familiarity with the Islamic tradition. 3 hrs. sem.

RELI0376A-S18

CRN: 22181

Religion and American Politics
Religion and American Politics
Does religion belong in politics? Should religious reasons be permitted in public political debate? Should candidates for office publicly declare their religious beliefs? Are orthodox Christianity, Judaism, and Islam fundamentally incompatible with democratic principles? This course examines these and similar questions regarding the relationship between religion and American democracy. We will study the role religion does in fact play in American politics, but primarily we will ask what role, if any, religion should play in politics. We will consider this last question by consulting a number of important contemporary political philosophers and theologians. (One of the following courses: RELI 0190, RELI 0275, RELI 0293, PSCI 0101, PSCI 0102, PSCI 0104, PSCI 0107, or any course in Philosophy) 3 hrs. sem.

RELI0500A-S18

CRN: 20100

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500B-S18

CRN: 20102

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500D-S18

CRN: 20103

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500F-S18

CRN: 20841

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500G-S18

CRN: 20623

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500J-S18

CRN: 20231

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500K-S18

CRN: 20624

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500N-S18

CRN: 21497

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0500P-S18

CRN: 21516

Independent Research
Independent Research
(Approval Required)

RELI0700A-S18

CRN: 20232

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700B-S18

CRN: 20233

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700D-S18

CRN: 20234

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700F-S18

CRN: 20842

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700G-S18

CRN: 20626

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700J-S18

CRN: 20238

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700K-S18

CRN: 20627

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700N-S18

CRN: 21498

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0700P-S18

CRN: 21517

Senior Project in Religion
Senior Project
(Approval Required)

RELI0701A-S18

CRN: 21221

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701B-S18

CRN: 21222

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701D-S18

CRN: 21224

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701F-S18

CRN: 21226

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701G-S18

CRN: 21227

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701J-S18

CRN: 21230

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701K-S18

CRN: 21231

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701N-S18

CRN: 21499

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701O-S18

CRN: 21663

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

RELI0701P-S18

CRN: 21518

Senior Thesis in Religion
Senior Research for Honors Candidates
Approval required

Department of Religion

Munroe Hall
427 College Street
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753