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Religion and Politics

We often hear that you should never discuss religion and politics in “polite company.” Yet, religion and politics inform so much of our world today. From the religious affiliations and speeches of American politicians, to the Religious Right’s voting bloc, to tensions in the Middle East, to Hindu Nationalism, to churches’ views on same-sex marriage, it’s hard to read the news without coming across intersections of religion and politics. In this course, we will ask why religion and politics are such pervasive elements of our global society, with a focus on the American context, and whether religion is inherently political and politics inherently religious. We will begin by establishing frameworks for studying religion and politics from the academic study of religion and political science. Then we will examine contemporary case studies where religion and politics intersect by reading scholarship and primary sources. Finally, we will turn inward to study the politics of historical memory in Kentucky, Lexington, and Transylvania to unpack the personal and local dimensions of politics. Throughout, we will work toward a research paper that analyzes a case study of your choice. Counts for Area V: Writing Intensive.

Leslie Ribovich
Author

Transylvania University
Institution

Community College, Public College or University, Private College or University
Institution Type

Syllabus
Resource Type

Intro, Undergraduate Course
Class Type

2022
Date Published

Religious Studies
Discipline

Atheism/Agnosticism/Skepticism, Buddhism, Catholic, General Comparative Traditions, Hinduism, Indigenous, Islam, Judaism, New Religious Movements, Other Christianities, Other Traditions, Protestant
Religous Tradition

Business/Capitalism/Labor, Class/Power, Empire/Foreign Policy/Globalism, Gender/Women/ Sexuality, Politics/Law/Government, Popular Culture/Media/Music/Sports, Pluralism/Secularism/Culture Wars
Topics

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