Spring 2018 Course Offerings
Religious Studies Courses
RLST 1111. First-Year Writing Seminar - Renaissance Art and Politics. PRICE (MWF 10:10-11:00) – HCA
Independent learning and inquiry in an environment in which students can express knowledge and defend opinions through intensive class discussion, oral presentations, and written expression. May be repeated for credit once if there is no duplication of topic, but students may earn only up to 3 credits in any 1111 course per semester of enrollment.
RLST 1710. Religions of Japan. LOWE (MWF 9:10-10:00) – SBS
Major religious traditions of China. Taoism, Buddhism, Confucianism, state-sponsored religious systems, and popular religion. Thought and practice from ancient times to the present.
RLST 2881. Myth and History of Religious Biography. STEWART (M 3:10-5:40) – HCA
Religious biography and hagiography as distinct literary genres. Hero mythology and narrative patterning. Ways religions construct unique biographical images by combining the historical life with religious belief. Examples from lives of Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad, Luther, Caitanya, Shinran, and Mama Lola. Interpretive strategies include hermeneutic theory, modes of history, structuralism, and feminism; additional theoretical per- spectives on translation, orality, and reader response criticism.
RLST 3142. Slave Thought & Culture in the American South. OGHOGHOMEH-WELLS (MWF 1:10-2:00)
In this course, we will explore the meanings of enslavement from the perspectives of those who experienced it, and in doing so, interrogate broader questions of the relationship between slavery and the construction of racialized group identities. Using autobiographical narratives, eyewitness accounts, slaveholder diaries, images, and archaeological evidence from the United States, we will examine the religions, philosophical, and experiential orientations that grounded the enslaved psyche and found expression in bondspeople's music, movement, footways, dress, and institutions. Although the United States South will be our primary region for interrogation, we will analyze the thought and culture formations of U.S bondspeople in light of the discursive and aesthetic productions of Africa-descended peoples throughout the diaspora.
RLST 3316. Christianity in the Reformation Era. LIM (MW 9:10-10:00) - HCA
The setting of the Reformation (c. 1500-1648) and its developments together with consideration with some of the significant ecclesiastical, theological, and historical issues of the period. Attention to backgrounds and causes and examination of major individuals and ecclesiastical patterns. The aim of the course is to help students understand and interpret the events, become familiar with some of the major theological documents, and reflect upon questions of continuing historical interest that have come out of the Reformation.
RLST 3350. Christians and Jews in Medieval and Early Modern Europe. PRICE (TR 9:35-10:50) – INT
How did Judaism survive in Europe? Why did it not survive in many areas? This is an introductory seminar on the complex and often tragic history of Christian-Jewish relations in medieval and early modern Europe. We will study the religious and social roots of anti-Semitism, as well as the impact, for better or worse, of larger cultural and political transformations. The course focuses on European history from the medieval persecutions of Jews to the expansion of religious toleration in the Enlightenment. Close consideration of legal toleration, banishments, re-admissions, and the impact of Christian reform movements. No pre-requisites; no prior knowledge necessary.
RLST 3747. Daoist Tradition. CAMPANY (TR 9:35-10:50) – HCA
Historical and thematic survey of the Daoist tradition in China. Philosophical classics and religious scriptures, as well as social history are covered. Daoism today.
RLST 3749. Zen Buddhism. LOWE (MWF 11:10-12:00) – INT
A study of the development of Zen Buddhism in China and Japan with special attention to its basic philosophy, its position within Mahayana Buddhism, its meditational techniques, and its contemporary significance.
RLST 3920. Women and Religion. OGHOGHOMEH-WELLS (MWF 12:10-1:00) - P
In this course, we will explore the ways that femaleness and woman-gendered identities configure religious consciousness and performance across cultures and chronologies. Through an examination of women's sacred productions and roles in Native American, West African, Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Vodou, and other religious traditions, we will interrogate how religion shapes gender identity, and conversely, how woman-gendered identity informs religiosity. We will consider such questions as: how has the presence of women - as embodied and ideological figures - shaped various religious cultures and performances; how do women perform, embody and/or articulate religiosity differently from their man-gendered counterparts; can we discuss the category of "women's religion," or do such rubrics essentialize socially-constructed identities?
RLST 3753. East Asian Buddhism: The Lotus Sutra. CAMPANY (TR 1:10-2:25) – INT
East Asian Buddhist texts. Key Buddhist ideas, values, practices, and institutions. Chronological surveys of key developments in major historical periods. East Asian Buddhism is a vast subject. Many scholars have spent their entire careers working in just a corner of it. Rather than attempting a comprehensive survey, this course focuses on aspects of East Asian Buddhism carefully chosen to illuminate the powerful, variegated, long-lasting religion it was and still is. Readings include the Lotus Sutra and the famous Zen text known as the Platform Sutra.
RLST 4593. Advanced Seminar in Islamic Tradition. EIDO (MW 1:10-2:35)
Analysis of original Arabic texts, manuscript reading, and research methods. Topics vary. May be repeated for credit more than once if there is no duplication in topic. Students may enroll in more than one section of this course each semester.
RLST 4836. The Religious Self According to Jung. GAY (TR 11:00-12:15) – SBS
The religious core of human existence as related to the concepts of the archaic unconscious and the birth of the self in C. G. Jung’s analytical psychology. Study of the life and thought of Jung as illustrated by his autobiography, Memories, Dreams, Reflections. Critical assessment of his theory as a means for understanding religious phenomena.
RLST 4939. Religious Autobiography. GELLER (TR 1:10-2:25) – P
The construction of identity in religious autobiography: motivations (personal sal- vation, witness, proselytism); relationships among self, God, and religious tradition; role of memory; cultural, gender, and religious differences. Readings may include Augustine, Gandhi, Malcolm X, Angelou, Wiesel.
RLST 4970. Majors Colloquium. LOWE (M 2:10-3:00)
Regular presentations and critical readings of student projects and professional writings. May be repeated for credit twice for a total of 3 credit hours. Open only to majors.
** For those students interested in taking DIV 6713/REL 6711 History of Theodicy in Christian Traditions, please contact Dr. Paul Lim for instructor permission. The course will be held on Tuesday nights, from 5:30-7:30, at the River Bend Maximum Security Prison. **
ARA 1102. Elementary Arabic. HAMAD (MTWRF 8:10-9:00) (MTWRF 9:10-10:00) / EIDO
(MTWRF 11:10-12:00) – INT
Continuation of 1101. Development of reading, listening, speaking, and writing skills. No credit for students who have earned credit for a more advanced Arabic language course. Prerequisite: 1101.
ARA 2202. Intermediate Arabic. HAMAD (TR 11:00-12:15) – INT
Continuation of 2201. Practice and development of language skills at the intermediate-advanced level. Intensive work in spoken Arabic with emphasis on vocabulary acquisition, reading comprehension, and writing skills. Advanced grammar, modern Arabic word formation, verb aspect usage, and structure of complex sentences. No credit for students who have earned credit for a more advanced Arabic language course. Prerequisite: 2201.
ARA 3102. Advanced Arabic. EIDO (TR 1:10-2:25) – INT
Continuation of 3101. Further development of listening, reading, speaking, and writing skills in the Arabic language. Emphasis on grammar and literary techniques. Offered on a graded basis only. No credit for students who have earned credit for a more advanced Arabic language course. Prerequisite: 3101.