2018-19 Edition

Undergraduate Program in Religious Studies

Susan Klein, Director
400 Murray Krieger Hall
949-824-6735
http://www.humanities.uci.edu/religious_studies/

Overview

Religious Studies includes an interdisciplinary major and minor that focus on the comparative understanding of the various ways different peoples, across space and through time, have developed their religious ideas, values, systems, beliefs, rituals, and traditions in response to fundamental questions of human existence. The curriculum seeks to provide a wide-ranging academic understanding and knowledge of the religious experience in society through study in the Schools of Humanities, Social Sciences, Social Ecology, and the Claire Trevor School of the Arts. As an interdisciplinary academic discipline, the study of religion offers a rigorous, systematic, and dispassionate intellectual inquiry into various aspects of religious systems, their practitioners and outlooks, and their goals and expressions. It employs a wide variety of approaches and methods in order to understand the role of religion in both human experience and thought.

Students in the Religious Studies major complete an emphasis either in World Religious Traditions or, more particularly, in Judaism/Christianity/Islam.

Categories and Approved Courses

The complete list of approved courses varies from quarter to quarter, depending upon course scheduling. For complete up-to-date information on approved courses, please consult the Religious Studies website.

Requirements for the B.A. in Religious Studies

All students must meet the University Requirements.
All students must meet the School Requirements.
Requirements for the Major
A. Complete:
REL STD 5A World Religions I
REL STD 5B World Religions II
REL STD 5C Religious Dialogue
REL STD 110 Thinking about Religion: Theories and Methodologies
or REL STD 110W Thinking about Religion: Theories and Methodologies
B. Select six upper-division electives, two in each of the following categories: 1
1. Judaism/Christianity/Islam
2. World Religious Traditions
3. Thematic Approaches to Religion
C. Select two additional upper-division courses from either category 1 or 2 above in order to complete an emphasis in Judaism/Christianity/Islam or in World Religious Traditions.

Studying Abroad: Students are encouraged to study abroad and may be able to satisfy a significant portion of their requirements abroad. Courses taken abroad must be approved by the Director of Religious Studies in order to be applied toward major requirements.

Residence Requirement for the Major: A minimum of five upper-division courses required for the major must be completed successfully at UCI.

Additional Information

Career Opportunities

Majoring in Religious Studies is an excellent preparation for living in a multicultural society and for a variety of careers in counseling, teaching, commerce, writing, government, the arts, and professional religious leadership. The major’s emphasis on broad understanding, critical thinking skills, and clear written expression provides an effective springboard for graduate study in the humanities and social science or professional schools in medicine, law, or business.

The UCI Career Center provides services to students and alumni including career counseling, information about job opportunities, a career library, and workshops on resume preparation, job search, and interview techniques. See the Career Center section for additional information.

Requirements for the Minor in Religious Studies

Requirements for the Minor
A. Complete:
REL STD 5A World Religions I
REL STD 5B World Religions II
REL STD 5C Religious Dialogue
REL STD 110 Thinking about Religion: Theories and Methodologies
or REL STD 110W Thinking about Religion: Theories and Methodologies
B. Four upper-division electives selected from the three categories under B in the B.A. in Religous Studies, including at least one course from both categories 1 and 2. Two of the four courses must be outside of the student’s major. One relevant lower-division course may be substituted for an upper-division course, with prior approval.

Residence Requirement for the Minor: Four upper-division courses required for the minor must be completed successfully at UCI. Two of the four may be taken through the UC Education Abroad Program, provided course content is approved by the Director of the Religious Studies program.

Courses

REL STD 5A. World Religions I. 4 Units.

An introduction to the history, doctrine, culture, and writing of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

Same as HISTORY 16A.

(IV and VIII ).

REL STD 5B. World Religions II. 4 Units.

An introduction to various religious traditions in selected areas of the world—including India and South Asia, East Asia, Africa, and the Americas.

Same as HISTORY 16B.

(IV and VIII ).

REL STD 5C. Religious Dialogue. 4 Units.

Lectures and discussion on controversial topics in religion: sexual morality; religious violence; science; treatment of women and girls; religious truth, American Constitutional matters; secularization; the future of religion, and other topics.

Same as HISTORY 16C.

(IV, VIII)

REL STD 17. An Economic Approach to Religion. 4 Units.

Introduction to how basic economic concepts such as demand, supply, consumption, production, competition, free-riding, innovation, regulation, and rent-seeking can be applied to understand observed religious behavior.

Same as ECON 17.

(III)

REL STD 21. Philosophy and Religion. 4 Units.

Examines the intersection of religion and philosophy from a standpoint that does not presuppose previous academic study of either. Both Western and Eastern traditions and perspectives may be explored.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 56. Society and Religion. 4 Units.

A critical and personal examination of the varieties of religious and spiritual experience human beings are undergoing in contemporary society. The role of conscious understanding and unconscious conditioning regarding religion and spirituality.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 60. Gender and Religion. 4 Units.

A presentation in selected issues in the study of gender and religion.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

(III, VIII)

REL STD 90. Aspects of Religion. 4 Units.

A presentation of selected issues in the study of religion.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 91. Topics in Aspects of Asian Religions. 4 Units.

A survey course of a specific Asian religious tradition such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Daoism, Confucianism, or Shinto in its manifestation in Asia or in its transmission to the Americas.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 100. Topics in the Study of Religion. 4 Units.

The intersection of religious belief and practices with selected subjects of continuing interest.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 103. Topics in the Philosophy of Religion. 4 Units.

Critical examination of philosophical concepts in religious scripture and theology, e.g., the nature and existence of God, miracles, the problem of evil, and divine command theories in ethics. May include any religious tradition.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 106. Topics in Gender and Religion. 4 Units.

Critical examination of how religious beliefs and practices have shaped (and been shaped by) attitudes toward gender and sexuality in modern and/or premodern society.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 110. Thinking about Religion: Theories and Methodologies. 4 Units.

A survey and investigation of the major thinkers, theories, and methodologies in the study of religions. Designed to develop the student's ability to analyze and articulate theoretical arguments; includes a paper on relevant Religious Studies topics.

Prerequisite: (REL STD 5A or HISTORY 16A) and (REL STD 5B or HISTORY 16B) and (REL STD 5C or HISTORY 16C)

Overlaps with REL STD 110W.

Restriction: Religious Studies Majors have first consideration for enrollment.

REL STD 110W. Thinking about Religion: Theories and Methodologies. 4 Units.

A survey and investigation of the major thinkers, theories, and methodologies in the study of religions. Designed to develop the student's ability to analyze and articulate theoretical arguments in writing; includes a paper on relevant Religious Studies topics.

Prerequisite: (REL STD 5A or HISTORY 16A) and (REL STD 5B or HISTORY 16B) and (REL STD 5C or HISTORY 16C). Satisfactory completion of the Lower-Division Writing requirement.

Overlaps with REL STD 110.

Restriction: Religious Studies Majors have first consideration for enrollment.

(Ib)

REL STD 115. Religion and World Politics. 4 Units.

Examines the relationship between religion and world politics historically and today, focusing on connections with peace/war, democracy, human rights, secularism(s), and globalization. Covers major debates, scholarship, concepts, and theories through class exercises, exams, and essays.

Prerequisite: POL SCI 41A or INTL ST 11 or INTL ST 12 or REL STD 5A or REL STD 5B or REL STD 5C

Same as POL SCI 146B, INTL ST 151B.

REL STD 120. Topics in Asian Religious Traditions. 4 Units.

Studies involving (but not limited to) Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Jainism, Sikhism, Daoism, Shinto or Shamanism, including both elite and doctrinal aspects and forms of more popular religiosity.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 122. Ancient India. 4 Units.

Examines the visual and religious history of the region defined as "India" today, but necessarily encompassing modern Bangladesh and Pakistan. Culminates with the supposed Golden Age of the Gupta empire and its far-reaching legacies.

Same as HISTORY 170A, ART HIS 155A.

REL STD 123. Medieval India. 4 Units.

Begins with the Gupta period's aesthetic legacies in South Asia's architecture, sculpture, and painting. Explores the dispersal of Islam throughout South Asia, including the Muslim communities of southern India.

Same as HISTORY 170B, ART HIS 155B.

REL STD 124. Topics in Modern Indian Religion. 4 Units.

Topics in religions of the Indian subcontinent including, but not confined to, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, Islam, and Buddhism from the founding of the Mughal Empire in 1526 to the creation of the several modern states of the Indian subcontinent.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 130. Jewish, Islamic, and Middle Eastern Religious Traditions. 4 Units.

Character and evolution of Egyptian, Jewish, Zoroastrian, Muslim, and other religious communities of the region from their formative periods to the present era.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 130F. Jews and Power. 4 Units.

Examines the relationship between the Jewish people and political power over a 3500 year period. How have Jews preserved their communal interests and personal safety? How have they defined the proper relationship of the people to political authority.

Same as HISTORY 130F, POL SCI 154J.

REL STD 140. Early Western Religious Traditions. 4 Units.

Religious perspectives of the Mediterranean and European regions from the earliest times to approximately 1500 C.E.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 141. Recent Western Religious Traditions. 4 Units.

Studies related to Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox Christianity as well as alternative belief systems in Europe of the early modern and modern eras.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 150. Religion in the Americas. 4 Units.

Religious belief and social context in North and South America from the earliest human societies to the present.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 160. Diaspora Religions. 4 Units.

Examination of what happens to belief and practice as religious communities are scattered geographically.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 170. Topics in Comparative Studies in Religion. 4 Units.

Literary, historical, or philosophical comparison of selected religious and quasi-religious traditions, their beliefs and practices.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

REL STD 190. Senior Colloquium. 4 Units.

Reading and group discussion of selected texts under the direction of an instructor. Paper required.

Repeatability: May be taken for credit 3 times as topics vary.

Restriction: A minimum of two students must enroll.

REL STD 199. Independent Study. 1-4 Units.

Directed reading and research in consultation with a faculty member. Substantial written work required.

Repeatability: Unlimited as topics vary.

Restriction: Upper-division students only.

REL STD 399. University Teaching . 4 Units.

Limited to teaching assistants.

Grading Option: Satisfactory/unsatisfactory only.

Repeatability: May be repeated for credit unlimited times.

Restriction: Graduate students only.

Affiliate Faculty

Elizabeth G. Allen, Ph.D. University of Michigan, Associate Professor of English; Comparative Literature; Religious Studies (Chaucer, Gower, 15th century poetry; exemplary literature, romance, chronicle, episodic form; intersections between ethics and politics, politics and religion; hospitality, sovereignty, legal and constitutional history of England)
Stanley Bailey, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, Professor of Sociology; Religious Studies (race and ethnicity, religion, immigration, Latin America)
Emily L. Baum, Ph.D. University of California, San Diego, Associate Professor of History; Religious Studies (modern Chinese history, history of medicine)
Victoria Bernal, Ph.D. Northwestern University, Professor of Anthropology; Culture and Theory; Gender and Sexuality Studies; Religious Studies
Susan K. Brown, Ph.D. University of Washington, Professor of Sociology; Religious Studies (immigration, inequality, urban sociology)
Carol M. Burke, Ph.D. University of Maryland, College Park, Professor of English; Religious Studies (literary and cultural theory, literary journalism, new media studies)
Vinayak Chaturvedi, Ph.D. University of Cambridge, Associate Professor of History; Culture and Theory; Religious Studies (modern South Asia, social and intellectual history)
Yong Chen, Ph.D. Cornell University, Associate Dean of Curriculum and Student Services and Professor of History; Asian American Studies; Religious Studies (Asian American history and immigration, food and culture, U.S./China economic and cultural interactions)
James T. Chiampi, Ph.D. Yale University, Professor of Italian; Religious Studies (Dante and Italian Renaissance)
Chungmoo Choi, Ph.D. Indiana University, Associate Professor of Korean Culture; Religious Studies (modern Korea, postcolonial and colonial discourse, popular culture, anthropology)
Susan C. Coutin, Ph.D. Stanford University, Professor of Criminology, Law and Society; Anthropology; Religious Studies (law, culture, immigration, human rights, citizenship, political activism, Central America)
Touraj Daryaee, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, UCI Endowed Chair in Persian Studies and Culture and Professor of History; Religious Studies (Iran, Zoroastrianism, Ancient Medieval World)
Rebecca Davis, Ph.D. University of Notre Dame, Associate Professor of English; Religious Studies (Old and Middle English literature, Piers Plowman, medieval religious culture, women’s writing, medieval philosophy)
Michael A. Fuller, Ph.D. Yale University, Department Chair and Professor of East Asian Languages and Literature; Chinese; Religious Studies (Chinese poetry and poetics, the cultural and intellectual contexts for poetry, aesthetic theory, linguistic issues in classical Chinese)
Qitao Guo, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, Associate Professor of History; Religious Studies (social, cultural, and religious history of pre-modern China (the Ming and Qing dynasties))
Andromache Karanika, Ph.D. Princeton University, Associate Professor of Classics; Religious Studies (Greek epic poetry, Greek lyric, folklore)
Bonnie D. Kent, Ph.D. Columbia University, Professor of Philosophy; Religious Studies
Aaron Kheriaty, M.D. Georgetown University, Health Sciences Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior; Religious Studies
Susan B. Klein, Ph.D. Cornell University, Professor of Japanese; Religious Studies (premodern and modern theater and dance, Japanese religions, feminist critical theory)
Mark A. LeVine, Ph.D. New York University, Professor of History; Culture and Theory; Religious Studies (modern Middle Eastern history, Islamic studies, histories of empire and globalization)
James K. Lee, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, Associate Professor of Asian American Studies; Culture and Theory; Religious Studies (Asian American literature and culture, contemporary U.S. literature, race and ethnic studies, urban studies, religious studies)
Matthias Lehmann, Ph.D. Freie Universtät Berlin, Director of the Interdisciplinary Minor in Jewish Studies and Teller Family Chair in Jewish History and Professor of History; European Languages and Studies; Religious Studies (early modern and modern Jewish history, Sephardic studies)
Karen Leonard, Ph.D. University of Wisconsin, Professor Emerita of Anthropology; Religious Studies
Jayne Elizabeth Lewis, Ph.D. Princeton University, Director of Humanities Honors Program and Professor of English; Religious Studies (literature and medicine, restoration and 18th century British literature, literature of the supernatural and gothic fiction, history and/of fiction, atmosphere as literary concept and construct within natural philosophy)
Julia R. Lupton, Ph.D. Yale University, Associate Dean for Research and Professor of English; Comparative Literature; Education; Religious Studies (Renaissance literature, literature and psychology)
Cecelia M. Lynch, Ph.D. Columbia University, Professor of Political Science; Religious Studies
Sanjoy Mazumdar, Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy; Asian American Studies; Religious Studies
Shampa Mazumdar, Ph.D. Northeastern University, Lecturer of Sociology; Religious Studies (religion, immigration, Asian American, urban sociology)
Michael T. McBride, Ph.D. Yale University, Professor of Economics; Logic and Philosophy of Science; Religious Studies
Joseph H. McKenna, Ph.D. Fordham University, Lecturer of History; Religious Studies (history of religious ideas)
Nancy Ann McLoughlin, Ph.D. University of California, Santa Barbara, Associate Professor of History; European Languages and Studies; Religious Studies (late Medieval Europe, intellectual history, gender)
John Miles, Ph.D. Harvard University, Professor Emeritus of English; Religious Studies (religion, literature, international relations, western scriptures [Jewish, Christian, Muslim] as literature; religious poetry and music, religion, science, and the environment)
Margaret Miles, Ph.D. Princeton University, Professor of Art History; Religious Studies; Visual Studies (Greek and Roman art, archaeology)
Keith L. Nelson, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, UCI Endowed Chair and Edward A. Dickson Emeritus of History; Religious Studies
Jane O. Newman, Ph.D. Princeton University, Professor of Comparative Literature; English; European Languages and Studies; Religious Studies (comparative Renaissance and early modern literature and culture [English, French, German, Italian, neo-Latin], Mediterranean Renaissance studies, Baroque, afterlives of antiquity, Walter Benjamin, Erich Auerbach, pre-modern lessons for the modern and post-modern)
Maria C. Pantelia, Ph.D. Ohio State University, Director, Thesaurus Linguae Graecae® and Professor of Classics; Religious Studies (Greek epic, Hellenistic poetry, digital technologies in the humanities)
Alka Patel, Ph.D. Harvard University, Associate Professor of Art History; History; Religious Studies; Visual Studies (South Asian and Islamic art and architecture, historiographies, Islamic diasporas in Cuba)
Amy Powell, Ph.D. Harvard University, Associate Professor of Art History; European Languages and Studies; Religious Studies; Visual Studies (Late medieval and early modern art of northern Europe, critical theory)
Adrian Preda, M.D. , Health Sciences Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior; Religious Studies
Gary Richardson, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, UCI Chancellor's Fellow and Professor of Economics; European Languages and Studies; Religious Studies
Michael Ryan, Ph.D. University of Iowa, Professor of English; Religious Studies (American literature, creative writing, poetry, poetics, autobiography)
Victoria A. Silver, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, Associate Professor of English; European Languages and Studies; Religious Studies (early modern literature and culture, religious studies, history and theory of rhetoric, literature and philosophy)
Daniel Stokols, Ph.D. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Social Behavior; Program in Public Health; Religious Studies; Urban Planning and Public Policy
Roxanne Varzi, Ph.D. Columbia University, Associate Professor of Anthropology; Culture and Theory; Film and Media Studies; Religious Studies; Visual Studies (Iran, media, war, visual anthropology, film studies, ethnographic and fiction writing)
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