Religious Studies

College of Humanities
Dean: Nancy McDermid

Religious Studies Program
HUM 388
Director: Jacob Needleman

Undergraduate Advisers: Bailis, Epstein, Kidner, Martin, A., Miller, R., Needleman


Minor in Religious Studies

Program Scope

The Religious Studies Minor offers students the opportunity to consider their own and others' religious heritage from an interdisciplinary perspective. Religion is an individual as well as a social phenomenon and the curriculum takes the students through both realms. Basic value questions are investigated from the viewpoint of religion, of disciplines looking at religion and of the individual in a pluralistic, unsettled world. More than half the minor is individually selected in consultation with an adviser, though the courses must represent the different dimensions of the religious experience as listed below. Students may focus their course combination in the minor on a specific religious tradition such as Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Buddhism; on a particular issue common to different religions; or on a particular culture or historical period.

As an interdisciplinary minor, Religious Studies can be taken in conjunction with any major.

Career Outlook

The Religious Studies Minor provides an excellent background for those considering the ministry, social work, counseling, politics, law, or teaching at any level. As a help in shaping a person's own view of the meaning and purpose of life, it can be of lasting value whatever one's career.


Courses for this program are listed in alphabetical sequence (consult Index for page reference).


Introduction to Religious Traditions

PHIL 502	World Religions (3) or a comparable 
course taken at another institution 3

The Nature of Religious Experience

PHIL 525/RELS 300 The Nature of Religious 
Experience or
PHIL 500	Philosophy of Religion			3

The Dimensions of Religious Experience

Normally one course should be taken from 
each of the following categories and no
more than two courses from a single
discipline 12

The Expressive Dimensions of Religious

ART 202	Western Art History II
ART 205	Asian Art History
BLS 610	African Art, Myth, and Religion
ENG 503	Arthurian Romance
ENG 525	Modern American Mystics
ENG 580	William Blake
ENG 589	Milton
ENG 630	Selected Studies: The Bible as 
ENG 630	Selected Studies: Religious Themes 
in Contemporary Literature
ENG 630	Selected Studies: The Visionary 
Child in Literature
ITAL 581	The Divine Comedy (taught in the 
MUS 505	Music of the World's People
DANC 415	Dance in Religion
DANC 430	Historical Survey of Dance in the 
Western World: 1300-Present
DANC 657	Dance Ethnology
THA 401	Theatre Backgrounds: 
500 B.C.-1642
WCL 260	Myths of the World

The Study of Particular Religious Traditions

AIS 310	American Indian Religion and 
AIS 450	American Indian Science
BLS 326	Black Religion
CLAS 330	Myth in Ancient Epic
CLAS 360	Greek and Roman Mythology
ENG 501	Age of Chaucer
ENG 509	Age of Humanism
ENG 630	Selected Studies: Bible and English/
American Literary Tradition
HIST 110	History of Western Civilization I
HIST 111	History of Western Civilization II
HIST 321	Hellenistic Greece
HIST 325	Late Antiquity
HIST 326	The Byzantine Empire
HIST 328	Early Christian Church to 313
HIST 329	Early Christian Church, 313-787
HIST 331	The High Middle Ages
HIST 336	The Reformation
HIST 480	Thought and Culture in America
HIST 600	The Ancient Near East
HIST 635	Recent History of the Jewish 
HUM 375	Biography of A City: Rome
HUM 403	The Early Middle Ages
HUM 404	The High Middle Ages
HUM 406	The Creation of the Modern World: 
16th-18th Centuries
MUS 532	Music of Latin America
PHIL 302	Medieval Philosophy
PHIL 504	History of Christian Thought I
PHIL 508	Indian Philosophy and Religion
PHIL 510	Far Eastern Philosophy and 
PHIL 510	Spiritual Traditions in China
PHIL 515	Semitic Religious Thought
PHIL 520	Modern Religious Thought
PHIL 530	Feminist Religious Thought
PHIL 530	Selected Religious Thinkers
SNSK 350	Sanskrit Language and Literature
WOMS590	Women's Myth and Ritual
WOMS560	Jewish Women

The Study of Religious Phenomena: Disciplinary Perspectives

ANTH 570	Anthropology of Religion
HIST 482	Religion in America
HUM 345	Humanism and Mysticism
NEXA 281	Myth and Scientific Thought
NEXA 380	Cosmologies and World Views
NEXA 387	Origins of Modern Science
PHIL 500	Philosophy of Religion

The Senior Experience

RELS 696	Directed Reading in Religious 
	Studies		3
Total		21

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