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REL 335 History of American Christianity

REL 335 History of American Christianity - ` REL 335...

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` REL 335 History of American Christianity Fall, 2008 T/R – 8:00 – 9:10 Mossman 104 Instructor: Steve Rankin Office: Mossman Hall, M115 Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 9:30-11:30 and by appointment Phone: Office – x6393 Home - 221-4012 Cell – 620+222-4354 E-mail : [email protected] Course Description: A survey of American Christianity set in the larger context of world history. It invites students to explore the role Christianity has played in North American in shaping (as well as being shaped by) cultural characteristics of the United States. Cross-listed with History. Credit 3 hours. Please note: You are responsible to keep track of all requirements and deadlines found in this syllabus. Course Format: A combination of presentations by professor with reading, writing and classroom discussion. Heavy emphasis is placed on students’ reflections and contributions to discussions. Course Outcomes: 1. Conceptual Knowledge: Students will gain basic knowledge of major events, conditions and leading persons in the history of American Christianity. 2. Critical thinking: Students will be able to demonstrate ability to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of ideas and forces shaping American Christianity. 3. Communication: Students will be able to state their opinions and explain their reasons for holding them. 4. Ethical Behavior and Spiritual Awareness: Students will develop an appreciation for the role of the church, understood ecumenically, in American history. Course Objectives: 1. Demonstrate a sound general knowledge of the narrative sequence of the history of American Christianity through quizzes and the final examination. 2. Demonstrate critical thinking through class discussions and a research paper. 3. Plot the changes in attitude regarding the nature and purpose of the church in American society through journal entries. Textbooks: 1. Noll, Mark A. The Old Religion in a New World: The History of North American Christianity . Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002. 1
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2. Hatch, Nathan. The Democratization of American Christianity . New Haven: Yale University Press, 1989. 3. Mathisen, Robert R., ed. Critical Issues in American Religious History: A Reader . 2 nd revised edition. Waco: Baylor University Press, 2006. We will use selected readings from this text. Course Requirements: 1. Weekly reflection papers – This exercise involves writing one page (ca. 300 words) per week during the course, reflecting on the student’s thoughts and attitudes regarding the church or the Christian religion in American society. The paper will be submitted to the professor each week. It will be assessed on the basis of thoughtfulness and the seriousness with which the student engages the issued addressed in the paper. It should tie to readings and course discussions each week. In that sense, the reflections are not just random thoughts, but guided by interaction with specific course content. For example, if students have read or discussion something about Jonathan Edwards during the week, then the weekly journal should show the student’s reflections on that subject.
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REL 335 History of American Christianity - ` REL 335...

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