Spring 2019 Religion Department Course Offerings

November 13, 2018


Selected Spring and Winterlude 2019 Course Offerings

The academic study of religion allows one to explore questions of human being in many ways. Please check out our video!

Our introduction to the study of religion challenges conventional conceptions by considering how religion works, what it does, and why it matters. Similarly, our traditions courses—such as Buddhism, African-American Religion, Christianity, Greco-Roman Religions, and Islam—seek to explode preconceptions in order to expand understanding.

Many of our courses also address particular themes or issues, such as the role of religion in society—from the Creator’s Game (lacrosse) of the Haudenosaunee, to issues in the study of the world’s religions, to the role of gender in Islam, to an exploration of religion in terms of magic, witchcraft and the occult, to ways in which religion informs and undergirds ancient and modern practices of yoga, to debates about stem cells, to religion’s response to and role in the world’s conflicts, including America’s ongoing and all-too troubling problem with race.

Inquiry also plays a central role in our course offerings. It can be philosophical and theological, particularly in exploring the best possible ways to live—the focus of a course on religion, meaning and knowledge. It can be philosophical, interreligious (Islam and Christianity), and intercultural, as in a course on enlightenment between Islam and the West. It can be philosophical and political or philosophical and scientific as in a course on religion and politics in modern Judaism and a course on Islamic philosophy of science. It can also be philosophical, religious and aesthetic as in a course on religion and art.

Last, but certainly not least, our courses also explore the scriptural and the literary dimensions of religion, particularly in their historical, cultural, written and performative capacities, with one course even showcasing humor and satire

As this variety of course offerings demonstrate, the Department of Religion is multi-disciplinary. This allows our colleagues in related programs and departments, such as Jewish Studies, Political Science, and English and Textual Studies, to cross-list courses with us on a variety of topics—from Israeli literature and culture, to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, to Islamism and Islamist movements, to Jews and Judaism in the Renaissance imagination. Such intellectual richness is a great benefit for undergraduates wishing to construct vibrant and creative programs of study.

Come and join us!

Course Descriptions (PDF)

Contact Information

Prof. Marcia C. Robinson.
Office: 511HL,
email: mrobin03@syr.edu.