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BASS Politics and Sociology / Course details
Year of entry: 2023
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Course unit details:
Anthropology of Religion
|Unit level||Level 2|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 2|
|Available as a free choice unit?||Yes|
- The Anthropology of Religion.
- Religious knowledge and experience.
- The making of religious subjects
- The practice of religion
- Debates in the anthropology of religion.
- To introduce students to the main anthropological approaches to the analysis of religion.
- To work with key anthropological texts on the topic of religion.
- To explore the production of religious subjects and subjectivities.
On completion of this course, successful students will be equipped with sufficient knowledge and skills to:
- Understand and engage with debates and literature in the anthropology of religion.
- Explore the place of religious practice and belief in social life.
- Undertake comparative analysis of ’religious’ phenomena, knowledge and practice.
- Engage critically with the ways in which religious subjects and subjectivities are produced and matter/are made to matter.
Teaching and learning methods
The course is ethnography-led with a strong focus on anthropological monographs (each student will read two monographs) to critically engage concepts and frameworks in the anthropology of religion - belief, ritual, practice, and materiality. There will be short lectures on the conceptual themes and discussions grounded in ethnographic texts.
NB. Every student will be required to read two monographs in full. The first will be read by the whole class in the first half of the semester. Student will choose one monograph from 3 choices to read in the second half of the semester.
- Mid-term assessment (voice/presentation based) - worth 30%;
- Assessed essay at end of semester: 2500 words - worth 70%;
Feedback will be available on Blackboard.
These are general and introductory texts, which provide a good overview of the field:
Orsi, R A (ed). 2012. The Cambridge Companion to Religious Studies. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge
Lambek, Michael (ed.). 2002. A Reader in the Anthropology of Religion. Oxford: Blackwell
Morris, B. 2006. Religion and Anthropology: A Critical Introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
Eller, Jack. 2007. Introducing the Anthropology of Religion. London: Routledge
|Scheduled activity hours|
|Independent study hours|
|Soumhya Venkatesan||Unit coordinator|
Length of course: 12 weeks