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Sexuality and Religion in America (SA)

Sexuality has long been a contested and contentious issue within American religions, yet only recently have scholars and practitioners begun to forthrightly address it. This course will explore the emerging literature on sexuality and religion as a way to understand how approaches to sex and sexuality within "sacred spaces" have shaped private behavior and public opinion. We will give particular attention to American Evangelical and Catholic religious expressions for the way they have been especially influential in framing (and inhibiting) sexual discourse and practices in the US and throughout the world.

Instructors
Wallace D. Best
Sexuality and Religion in America (CD or HA)

Sexuality has long been a contested and contentious issue within most American religions, yet only recently have scholars begun to address it forthrightly. This course will explore the emerging literature on sexuality and religion as a way to understand how approaches to sex and sexuality within "sacred spaces" have shaped private behavior and public opinion. We will give particular attention to African American religious traditions, American evangelicalism, and Catholicism more broadly for the way they have been especially influential in framing (and inhibiting) sexual discourse and practices within the United States.

Instructors
Wallace D. Best
Spirits on Fire: Mysticism in The Spanish Empire (HA)

This course will explore the phenomenon of mysticism in Spanish America and early modern Spain. Visions, trances, witchcraft, ecstatic religiosity, miracles, religious authority, and ecclesiastical discipline all play important roles in this history. Issues of gender, race, ideas about the body, nature, and the supernatural are important themes in the scholarship and primary sources we will read together.

Instructors
Jessica Delgado
Studies in Ancient Judaism: Scholars and Their Critics

No description available

Instructors
Staff
Studies in Religion and Philosophy - Social Practices

No description available

Instructors
Staff
Studies in Religion: Hearts Strangely Warmed, Brains on Fire (EC)

This seminar will explore representations of religious experience - stories of sensory phenomena known, in the last analysis, only to the storyteller. How does one person convey to another that they have heard, seen, or felt the divine? What are the circumstances of discourse that make a story of experience more or less successful, and to whom? In American religious history the epistemological and social stakes of talking about experience have been particularly pronounced, and through personal accounts, works of fiction, and scholarly treatments we will explore those stakes, emphasizing the metaphors, genres, and media technologies involved.

Instructors
Seth A. Perry
Studies in Religion: Spirit Possession in Caribbean Religions (SA)

This course is designed to explore the possession experiences in Caribbean Religions. Through historical, ethnographic, autobiographical, literary and visual texts this course examines complex, gendered practices within the possession process, the vibrant spiritual energy that sustains communal connections during religious ceremonies, and the transnational imaginations that animate Caribbean religious practices in the Americas. Special attention will be given to Santeria, Candomble, Vodou, Myal, Palo Monte, and Revival Zion in the Americas.

Instructors
Eziaku A. Nwokocha
Studies in Theology: Israel and the Nations

No description available

Instructors
Staff
Sufism (EM)

This course examines Sufism or what is often called the mystical tradition in Islam. In Western media and popular discourse, Sufism is often portrayed as the 'soft-side' of Islam that is contrasted with the harsh 'legalism' of the Shari`a or Islamic law. In this class, we will try to interrupt this portrayal through a rigorous exercise of textual and conceptual interrogation. Using primary Sufi texts and sources of Euro-American scholarship on Sufism, we will explore the institutional and intellectual history, meditation and disciplinary practices, poetry and literature, as well as orientalist and neo-imperialist representations of Sufism.

Instructors
Tehseen Thaver
Sufism (EM)

This course examines Sufism or what is often called the mystical tradition in Islam. In Western media and popular discourse, Sufism is often portrayed as the 'soft-side' of Islam that is contrasted with the harsh 'legalism' of the Shari`a or Islamic law. In this class, we will try to interrupt this portrayal through a rigorous exercise of textual and conceptual interrogation. Using primary Sufi texts and sources of Euro-American scholarship on Sufism, we will explore the institutional and intellectual history, meditation and disciplinary practices, poetry and literature, as well as orientalist and neo-imperialist representations of Sufism.

Instructors
Tehseen Thaver
Syriac and Aramaic

No description available

Instructors
Staff
Talmudic Research (HA)

This course is intended for students who already have experience with the Talmud and want to expand their engagement with the text by acquiring modern research methods. It addresses the use and significance of manuscripts of the texts; the relationship between the Bavli and the Yerushalmi; the sources of the Talmud and the way in which it was put together. We will trace the development of Talmudic ideas, laws, and stories and determine how and why different versions developed. We will also examine the text in its historical context. Students will be introduced to the online and offline databases and bibliographic tools.

Instructors
Moulie Vidas
The American Sermon (HA)

The sermon is one of the most unique contributions to the American literary and oral tradition. This course examines sermonic texts and recordings from the late 18th century to the present. We will explore written and recorded homilies, placing both sermons and sermonizers in historical context. In this way we want to discover not only the theological perspectives contained in the sermons but also the cultural, social, economic, and political situations in the U.S. that helped shape them. Rather than a concern for the "practice" of preaching, our course focuses on sermons as literature and historical narratives.

Instructors
Wallace D. Best
The Apostle Paul in Text and Context: His Letters, His Communities, and His Interpreters (HA)

In this seminar we will: 1) study the New Testament letters of the apostle Paul in their first-century context and their earliest interpretations; and 2) explore recent trends in Pauline scholarship, including the New Perspective. We will pay special attention to archaeological finds from the Pauline cities, which help us understand better the cultural, political, and religious milieu in which the letters were received and read. Over Fall break (October 16 - October 25) the class will travel to Greece and visit the archaeological sites of the cities with early Christ-communities and other important or relevant sites.

Instructors
AnneMarie Luijendijk
The Archaeology of Jerusalem: Selected Topics (LA)

In this course we will explore, discuss and dispute key archaeological topics pertaining to various aspects of the material multicultures of Jerusalem, from the time of Alexander the Great until its surrender to the Muslem Caliph, 'Umar. During these centuries, Jerusalem grew from a small city into "by far the most famous city, not of Judæa only, but of the East." It became the central sacred locale of the Jewish people, and the cradle of Christianity. During these times, it was twice a pagan city -Antioch in Jerusalem and Aelia Capitolina.

Instructors
Haim Goldfus

Undergraduate

Fall 2022

Spring 2022

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