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Undergraduate Courses

Second-Year Courses

REL2040F Religion and Society

Structure: Second-year, first-semester course, 3 lectures and 1 tutorial per week.
Convener: Professor Asonzeh Ukah
Entrance requirements: Second-year status. 

This course introduces the student to classic and contemporary theories of religion as a social reality. The course develops descriptive, interpretative, and explanatory methods for analysing the role of religion in social relations and the construction of group identities. Using critical approaches from the sociology of religion, hermeneutic philosophy and the anthropology of religion, the course includes analyses of selected case-studies from the history of religions, focusing on the role of sacred narratives or myths in identity-making; on religion and power/politics; and on religious pluralism.

 


REL2047F Religion, Sexuality and Gender

Structure: Second-year, first-semester course, 3 lectures and 1 tutorial per week.
Convener: Associate Professor Sa'diyya Shaikh
Entrance requirements: Second-year status.

This course explores ideologies of gender and sexuality in the history of religious traditions, focusing particularly on the role of women in religion. Special attention will be given to how gender is symbolised in religious myth and ritual practices, exploring how this relates to women’s lived experiences. Connections between sexuality, embodiment and spirituality will be addressed through case studies in ‘Abrahamic,’ African and Asian religions. Drawing on examples from the beliefs and practices of different religious traditions, the course aims to engage with cross-cultural and interdisciplinary scholarship in religious studies, gender studies, women’s studies and feminist theory. Theoretical reflections on gender in religious traditions will be addressed throughout the course.

 


REL2054F Religion, Sexuality and Gender +

Structure: Second-year, first-semester course, 3 lectures and 1 tutorial per week.
Convener: Associate Professor Sa'diyya Shaikh
Entrance requirements: None (extended programme students only).

This course explores ideologies of gender and sexuality in the history of religious traditions, focusing particularly on the role of women in religion. Special attention will be given to how gender is symbolised in religious myth and ritual practices, exploring how this relates to women’s lived experiences. Connections between sexuality, embodiment and spirituality will be addressed through case studies in ‘Abrahamic,’ African and Asian religions. Drawing on examples from the beliefs and practices of different religious traditions, the course aims to engage with cross-cultural and interdisciplinary scholarship in religious studies, gender studies, women’s studies and feminist theory. Theoretical reflections on gender in religious traditions will be addressed throughout the course.

 


REL2048S Psychology of Religion

This course may also be offered in Summer Term – please consult the Department. Additional session offering: REL2048P.
Structure: Second-year, second-semester course, 3 lectures and 1 tutorial per week.
Convener: Dr Louis Blond
Entrance requirements: Second-year status.

This course pays special attention to issues of theory and method in the psychology of religion, in order to develop an understanding of personal identity, as well as mental and spiritual health in religious contexts. While recognising the importance of gender, class, race, ethnicity and other  social forms of identity, the course focuses on religious dynamics of personal identity and the formation of selfhood through case studies in consciousness, mysticism, embodiment, intertextual reading practices and cultural resources for being human. The course explores the various ways in which religion might inform personal, social and intersubjective notions of self, while providing conception of the good/the good life.