Religions Resist Modernity
|Our Overall Goal|
To explore how various cultures have used religion in an attempt to resist the hegemony of Western modernity.
Introduction. Who is modern? Who is not and why not?
• The Great Western Transmutation: Hodgson (in Reader)
Ritual resistance among the Lakota Sioux
• Catherine Albanese, “The Oglala Sioux” (in Reader)
• William Paden, “Ritual” (in Reader)
Scientism, hegemony, & myth in America
• Fundamentalism: Martin Marty, "A Season of Conflicts"
> First essay due
Nationalism, technicalism, & Hinduism in Gandhi’s life
• M.K. Gandhi, Intro, Part I thru Part II (NOT II: XIX, XXIII)
• M.K. Gandhi, Part III thru Gandhi, Part IV (except: IV: VI-VIII, XII, XV-XVIII, XX-XXII, XXXV-XXXVII, XL-XLVII)
|July 4||No class: observe expressions of nationalism|
• M.K. Gandhi, Part V (all) and Farewell ® (except:
XI, XIII, XVII, XIX-XX, XXXVII-XXXVIII)
Individualism & “the woman question”
• Raymond Baker, “Egypt” (in Reader)
Malcolm resists white, Christian hegemony
• Geneive Abdo, from Islam in America
> Second essay due
Modern Muslims, modern Americans, Muslim Americans
• Geneive Abdo, chs. TBA
The Taliban and al Qaeda
• Ahmed Rashid, Introduction, chs. pp. 1-2, 5-6, 8, 10,
Rationalism, cults, and the Branch Davidians
• in Stuart Wright, “Davidians and Branch Davidians,”
|July 23||> Third essay due|
Geneive Abdo, Mecca and Main Street
~~All of the texts above are also on Reserve in the library~~
Reader: The readers are now ready and can be purchased at the It's Only Natural store (not to be confused with the nearby restaurant by that name). It is located at 386 Main Street (860 346-1786). I would recommend calling ahead to ensure they have a copy available. If they have run out they should be able to get another copy quickly upon request.
This course attempts to provide the following for students:
(A) Familiarity with the dynamics of modernity and
This constitutes the most important part of the class because of the opportunity it affords you to discuss the issues that are of concern to you and hear those of others. Class attendance is mandatory and students are expected to be punctual and participate in discussions. The class presentation is included in class participation.
The class presentation: Each student will be responsible for initiating discussion for one class. S/he will accomplish this through a five-minute (ONLY!) presentation that analyzes any aspect of the day’s reading in the context of previous class readings, lectures, or conversations. The student will conclude their presentation with a single, insightful question intended to prompt conversation. No outside readings should be used. This question must be emailed to the professor at least an hour before the beginning of class.
The three paper assignments allow students the opportunity to fuse their class study with analysis of world events and communities while refining the ability to write succinctly. Answer the question with particular emphasis on analysis (not description) in a paper only four to five pages long. No quotes are allowed. Write your name only on the back of the last page and do not bother with a cover page. No collaboration with any other student, please.
|Basis of Grade|
Of the 1000 points which compose a grade, participation constitutes 100 points and each query response 300 points.
Wesleyan University will make reasonable accommodations for persons with documented disabilities. Students should provide documentation and schedule an appointment with the Office of the Dean of the College at least two weeks before services are needed. In each class where a student requests academic accommodations, the student must meet with the faculty member teaching the course at least one week prior to the requested accommodation. PLEASE! do not hesitate to discuss with me your needs for any accommodation.
Students are expected to abide by the Honor System in regard to all work and participation in this class. For details, see www.wesleyan.edu/acaf/policy/sc_honor_system.htm.