WREL2001 World Religions in Context
Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Alex Norman Session: Semester 1 Classes: 1x2-hr lecture/week, 1x1-hr tutorial/week Prerequisites: 12 junior credit points from Studies in Religion Assessment: 1x1000wd field report (25%), 1x1000wd methodological exercise (25%), 1x750wd essay plan presentation (10%), 1x1750wd essay (40%)
Students will investigate typologies of 'religion', distinguishing between 'world religions' and other 'religions' (particularly indigenous religions), and recognise that these classifications resulted from European colonialism and the encounter of Christianity with other religions (in Asia, the Americas, and Africa). Religions with scriptures, priesthoods, and institutions paralleling those of Biblical traditions were privileged over oral cultures and indigenous religions. Students study methods of textual criticism and historical investigation of the 'origins' of religion, from which emerged the discipline of 'religious studies'.