Courses

For a full list of courses offered by the Religious Studies department, see http://catalog.missouri.edu/courseofferings/rel_st/

 

RELIGIOUS STUDIES COURSES FOR SPRING SEMESTER 2020

REL ST 2100—Indigenous Religions (3). (same as ANTHRO 2100) Explores the central aspects of religious life in indigenous communities. Focusing on specific groups, it considers individual and group identity, the meaning of the sacred, and the impact of foreign domination.

REL ST 2110—Religions of the World (3). Explores the differing ways in which Asian and Western religions interpret life and reality. Traditions studied may include Hinduism, Buddhism, Chinese and Japanese religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

REL ST 2230—Religion and Popular Culture in the U. S. (3). Explores intersections of religion and popular culture and methods for analysis. 

REL ST 2240 — Harry Potter, Magic, and Religion (3). This course explores religious themes in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. Topics include ancient Greek, Roman, Celtic, and Norse mythological themes, the relationship between religion and magic, and reactions to the books among various religious groups.

REL ST 2860—Religious History of the Middle East II (3). This course is a historical introduction to the religions of the pre-modern and modern Middle East. It follows the histories of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam from the defeat of the Mongol army in Palestine in 1260 to the present day. In particular it focuses on the social, political, and economic interactions of the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim populations, and the role religion has (and has not) played in the formation and development of the modern Middle East. 

REL ST 2900 — Contemporary Religious Thought (3). Explores issues within contemporary Christian theology that cut across denominational lines such as: the nature and existence of God; secularization, relativism, and humanism; the authority of the Bible; attitudes toward other religions; the moral integrity of Christianity; and the purpose of human existence.

REL ST 3360—Cults and New Religious Movements (3).  While religious traditions constantly change, and new religons emerge in every historical time period, the new religious movements of the past century (many of which are often referred to negatively as "cults") present a particular challenge to contemporary cultures and societies. We will begin with a theoretical overview of new religious movements (NMRs) and will proceed gradually to discuss in detail the religion of the People's Temple and its charismatic leader and founder, Jim Jones. Online only. 

REL ST 3451W—Religion in Science Fiction - Writing intensive (3). Investigation of religious themes in science fiction novels, short stories and films. Themes include the nature of the sacred, the limits of human knowledge, understanding and experiencing transcendence, revelation and apocalypse. 

REL ST 3451—Religion in Science Fiction (3). Investigation of religious themes in science fiction novels, short stories and films. Themes include the nature of the sacred, the limits of human knowledge, understanding and experiencing transcendence, revelation and apocalypse. Online only. 

REL ST 3619—Religion and Race in the U. S. (3). This course explores intersections of race and religion in the United States. Areas explored in this course include but are not limited to: the role of religious institutions in the construction of race and racialization; the complex relationships between race, religion, and U.S. law, as well as historical and contemporary theologies of race

REL ST 3710—Reality of God (3). This course explores the meaning of "the loss of God" (Tillich) and various modern and contemporary attempts to reaffirm the reality of God.

REL ST 3740—Religion and Film (3). Addresses issues of interpretation and analysis in the convergence of religion and film. Online only. 

REL ST 4100—Religious Myth and Ritual (3). (Cross-leveled with REL_ST 7110). This course will unpack theoretical and methodological issues surrounding the study of embodied religious practice and the nature of religious narrative using myths and rituals from around the world's religious traditions.

REL ST 4380—Anthropological Theories of Religion (3). (Same as ANTHRO 4380, REL 7380, ANTHRO 7380). Course provides a critical evaluation of anthropological explanations of various forms of traditional religious behavior such as magic, shamanism, divination, ritual, mythology, and witchcraft.  The anthropological explanations examined range from nineteenth century classics to the current approaches of today.  Prerequisites:  ANTHRO 2030, ANTHRO 2100 or REL_ST 2100, or instructor's consent.

REL ST 4630—Sanskrit 1(3).  (Same as SAST 4350, REL 7630). This intensive course will cover the essentials of Sanskrit grammar in one semester and prepare students for further readings in Hindu and Buddhist Literature.

REL ST 4750—Women, Religion, and Culture(3).  (Same as WGST 4750, REL 7750, WGST 7750). An advanced study of the role of women in religion, focusing on the methods of determining the significance of gender in religious life, sacred texts, symbols, rituals and/or beliefs. Traditions studied include Christianity, Islam, contemporary pagan communities, and Native American traditions.

REL ST 7100—Religious Myth and Ritual (3). (Cross-leveled with REL_ST 4110). This course will unpack theoretical and methodological issues surrounding the study of embodied religious practice and the nature of religious narrative using myths and rituals from around the world's religious traditions.

REL ST 7380—Anthropological Theories of Religion (3). (Same as ANTHRO 4380, REL 4380, ANTHRO 7380). Course provides a critical evaluation of anthropological explanations of various forms of traditional religious behavior such as magic, shamanism, divination, ritual, mythology, and witchcraft.  The anthropological explanations examined range from nineteenth century classics to the current approaches of today. 

REL ST 7630—Sanskrit 1(3).  (Same as SAST 4350, REL 4630). This intensive course will cover the essentials of Sanskrit grammar in one semester and prepare students for further readings in Hindu and Buddhist Literature.

REL ST 7750—Women, Religion, and Culture(3).  (Same as WGST 4750, REL 4750, WGST 7750). An advanced study of the role of women in religion, focusing on the methods of determining the significance of gender in religious life, sacred texts, symbols, rituals and/or beliefs. Traditions studied include Christianity, Islam, contemporary pagan communities, and Native American traditions.