Usually a category of religious phenomena, such as religious experience, mysticism, the nature of deities; or the role and status of persons; healing in religious traditions; sectarian groups; major thinkers or movements; or themes and approaches in the study of religion. May be repeated for credit with different topics.
|Arts and Humanities||1 course|
Fall Semester informationJeffrey Kenney
370A: Tps: New Religious Movements
This course will explore the idea and emergence of new religious movements (NRMs) over the past several centuries worldwide. Sometimes called alternative religions, NRMs represent a division of the study of religion intended to focus on religious groups that are seen as or define themselves as counter-cultural or somehow in-tension with mainstream religions and society--what in the past were labeled "sects" and "cults." Designed as a collaborative research-based course, we will spend 4-5 weeks reading about theories and ideas related to the formation of NRMs, and then we will form interactive research pods (2-3 students) that focus on specific NRMs and help the class address questions such as: Why do they emerge? Who joins them? What are the common characteristics/traits of NRMs? Why have they grown in number? What do they say about mainstream religions/religiosity?