Examination of the relationship between food,, American religions, and American popular culture;, how food is incorporated into formal religious, rituals such as the Eucharist or fasting; how, cooking, communal eating, and food practices are, part of the more informal religious culture of, religious communities. Also, consideration of, whether eating and food have taken on religious, meaning within American culture as a whole, using, the Northwest as a focus.
Exploration of early Christianity, from the turn, of the eras to 400 C.E. Focus on the development, of the religion in the multicultural, pluralistic, context of the Greco-Roman world. Study of the, archaeological and written evidence for Christian, origins (i.e., the archaeology of Jerusalem, the, Galilee, and the Dead Sea Scrolls community; the, New Testament, the writings of "orthodox" and, "heretical" early Christian thinkers, the Dead Sea, Scrolls, and other relevant Judean texts)., Analysis of key themes in early Christian studies, (i.e., gender, orthodoxy and heterodoxy, early, Christianity's relationship to early Judaism,, Christianity and empire).
Introduction to major themes and movements in, American religious history from colonial origins, to the Civil War. Consideration of Native American, religious traditions, colonial settlement, slavery, and slave religion, revivalism, religion and the, revolution, growth of Christian denominationalism,, origins of Mormonism, using a comparative approach, in the effort to understand diverse movements., Central themes: revival and religious renewal,, appropriation of Old Testament language by various, groups (Puritans, African Americans, Mormons),, democratization of religion.
The religious, social, and political dynamics of, the Islamic world, circa 1300 C.E. to present,, especially the nineteenth through twenty-first, centuries. Earlier developments (e.g., the, Qur'an, Muhammad, Muslim dynasties) considered in, relation to the modern context. European, colonialism, postcolonial change, reform and, "fundamentalist" movements, Sufism, Muslim views, of "modernity," and changing understandings of, politics, gender, and relations with non-Muslims.
Gender as a component in religious experiences in, America from the colonial era to the present. The, relationship between gender and religious beliefs, and practices. Religion as a means of oppression, and liberation of women and men. Interactions, between laywomen and male clergy. The intersection, of religion, wellness, the body, and sports., Diverse movements and cultures including colonial, society, African American culture, immigrant, communities, and radical religious groups.
Advanced readings and major works in religion. In, consultation with faculty, selection of a thesis, topic and further reading in the discipline and, research in the topic area. Substantial written, document demonstrating mastery of theory and, methodology in the study of religion and the, ability to integrate these into the thesis topic.