What Makes the Sacred Sacred?|
Spring 2015 not offered
|Certificates: International Relations|
Sacred, sacredness, sacrifice, sacrament, sacristy, sanctity, sacrum, sanction, saint, consecrate, sacrosanct, sacrilege, desecrate. The notion of sacredness has pervaded the English language in myriad ways over nearly a millennium. What, then, makes the sacred sacred? Is sacredness universal? If so, what defines it? If not, why do Anglophones use the term sacred as if it is? Are there parallels among different religious cultures and their literatures? Are these parallels close enough that the English term sacred can be translated into other languages? This course will explore these questions using multidisciplinary methods and diverse readings reflecting various cultures' views of social and cosmic order. We will interrelate readings of primary and secondary sources by using four themes (sacred places, invoking the sacred, sacred bodies, and sacred nation) to examine five traditions (Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Lakota).
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (RELI)
Brown, Peter, THE CULT OF THE SAINTS
Doniger, Wendy, trans., THE RIG VEDA
Eck, Diana, SEEING THE DIVINE IMAGE IN INDIA
Eliade, Mircea, THE SACRED AND THE PROFANE
Linenthal, Edward T., SACRED GROUND: AMERICANS AND THEIR BATTLEFIELDS (Selections)
|Examinations and Assignments: |
Three short papers, one research paper, and one in-class participation.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
Seminar attendance and participation mandatory.
This course fulfills the "Thematic Approach" Religion Department major requirement.
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