Discovery module overview
This module introduces the Study of Religion/s as an academic field of studies. The module integrates the exploration of different approaches, theories, methods, concepts and issues in the study of religions with the reading of some classic texts in the study of religion/s. Throughout the module, religion is approached as something polymorphic (i.e. it comes in many shapes and sizes) and multi-dimensional (presenting many different faces), woven into local and global life and thought as well as embodied in religious institutions, texts, practices and images. The module does not aim to introduce specific religions as such but will use examples from a variety of religious traditions.
The objectives of the module are:
- - To introduce students to key approaches, methods, theories and concepts in the study of religion/s.
- - To develop students’ knowledge and understanding of critical issues and debates in the study of religion/s, such as gender, (post)colonialism, normativity and subjectivity.
- - To enhance students’ undergraduate skills such as academic reading and writing, critical thinking and argument.
The module consists of 11 lectures and 5 seminars.
- 1. Why studying religion/s?
- 2. History of the study of religion/s (defining religion, methods; insider/outsider)
- 3. Approaches to the study of religion/s: sociology
- 4. Approaches to the study of religion/s: anthropology
- 5. Critical issues in the study of religion/s: gender and sexuality
- 6. Critical issues in the study of religion/s: (post)colonialism
- 7. Dimensions of religion/s: text, belief, and authority
- 8. Dimensions of religion/s: ritual, practice and action
- 9. Dimensions of religion/s: institutions and community
- 10. Dimensions of religion: self, identity and the individual
- 11. Dimensions of religion/s: objects, images and buildings
- 1. Deprogramming (insider/outsider; positionality)
- 2. Assessments
- 3. Reading a classic text on religion (e.g. Marx, Weber, Durkheim)
- 4. Reading a modern text on religion (e.g. Mary Daly, Mary Douglas, Clifford Geertz)
- 5. Reading a postmodern text on religion (e.g. Michael Foucault, Talal Asad, Thomas Tweed; Saba Mahmood)
On completion of the module students have:
- - Foundational knowledge and understanding of selected approaches, methods, theories and concepts in the study of religion/s.
- - Basic knowledge and understanding of critical issues and debates in the study of religion/s, such as gender, (post)colonialism, normativity and subjectivity.
Assessment and teaching
|Assesment type||Notes||% of formal assesment|
|Total percentages (Assessment Coursework)||100|
This will be used by students to prepare for lectures.
- - Preparation for lectures: 11 x 2 = 22 hours
- - Preparation for seminars: 5 x 3 = 15 hours
- - Preparation of essay: 15 hours
Student progress is monitored through attendance and contributions/feedback during seminars as well as opportunities for other face-to-face and/or electronic exchanges including office hours.
|Delivery type||Number||Length hours||Student hours|
|Private Study Hours||84|
|Total Contact Hours||16|
|Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)||100|