SYLLABUS ALVAREZ - Department of Religious Studies REL 2011...

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Department of Religious Studies REL 2011 Religion: Analysis and Interpretation ______________________________________________________________________________ Instructor: Mr. Daniel Alvarez Class Hours: TR 9:30-11:00 a.m. Office Hours: TBA . Class Room: Paul Cejas 135 Office: DM 458A Fall 2010 E-Mail Address: Class ID: TBA Enrollment Password : TBA COURSE DESCRIPTION This course is an introduction to the study of religion. It will analyze various elements common to world religions and their expressions. In addition, it will examine the search for the transcendent and its implications at both the personal and the social level. TEXTBOOKS Franklin Edgerton, Bhagavad Gita , Harvard University Press, 1972. (9780674069251) Thomas J. Hopkins, The Hindu Religious Tradition (Wadsworth, 1971) (9780822100225) Walpola Rahula, What the Buddha Taught (Grove Press, 1974)(9780802130310) Lavinia and Dan Cohn-Sherbok, A Short History of Judaism (One World, 1994) (9781851682065) John Dominic Crossan, Jesus: A Revolutionary Biography (Harper Collins, 1994)(9780060616625) Annemarie Schimmel, Islam: An Introduction (SUNY, 1992)(9780791413289) COURSE STRUCTURE In this course the student will "immerse" him/herself in five (5) of the major world religions, as introduced and interpreted by Hopkins, Rahula, Fishbane, Schimmel, and Alvarez, which will provide the raw data for analysis, comparison, and the application of the conceptual tools and categories of the study of religion (for this course, the categories proffered by Smart in the first chapter of his book). To further enhance the appreciation of the religious dimension of the human, the student will select one (1) religious traditions outside his/her own for personal observation through visits to places of worship (from the list provided by instructor). The format of the field reports will also be provided by the instructor (see end of syllabus)-. Films/videos giving the student a unique audio-visual perspective into the rituals, symbols, practices, sensibilities, "look and feel" of religious traditions selected for study in this course will complement the lectures and discussions. Last but not least, the reading of the Bhagavad Gita will afford the student the opportunity to engage at a serious and sustained level one of the major non-Christian Scriptures. INSTRUCTIONAL OBJECTIVES 1. To provide the student with the "raw materials" for the study of religion by immersing the student in the beliefs, doctrines, rituals, symbols, (select) scriptures, and experiences (through site visits) of five of the major world religions. 2. To facilitate the informed cross-cultural comparison and evaluation of ways of being religious by focused study of select world religions. 3.
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SYLLABUS ALVAREZ - Department of Religious Studies REL 2011...

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