Religious Studies (RELS)

Subject Number Title Hours Catalog Description General Education Category
RELS 115 Understanding the Bible as Literature 3 hours. A broad overview of various literary genres in the Bible such as origin narrative, historical narrative, poetry, wisdom literature, prophetic/apocalyptic literature, parable, and epistle. Same as ENGL 115, and JST 115.   Creative Arts, Past, and World Cultures course.
RELS 120 Catholic Thought: An Introduction 3 hours. Introduction to the main topics, interests, and methods of Catholic thought. Same as CST 120.   Past course.
RELS 124 Hebrew Bible 3 hours. A study of the Five Books of Moses (a.k.a Torah or Pentateuch) within the contexts of the ancient Near East and biblical literature.   Same as CL 124 and JST 124.  Taught in English. Past course.
RELS 130 Introduction to Islam 3 hours. Introductory study of the religion, culture, and present variety of Islam in Islamic countries and in the West.  World Cultures course.
RELS 150 Catholicism in U.S. History 3 hours. The Catholic experience in the United States from its colonial origins to the present. Same as CST 150, and HIST 150.   US Society course.
RELS 225 Topics in Muslim-Jewish Relations 3 hours. Muslim-Jewish interactions from the rise of Islam until contemporary times, the relationship between Biblical and Quranic materials, the Jewish and Islamic interpretive tradition and the legal systems of the two religious traditions.   Same as CL 225 and JST 225.
RELS 230 Topics in Islam 3 hours. Topics, issues, and methodologies in Islamic studies. May be repeated if topics vary. Recommended background: ENGL 160.  World Cultures course.
RELS 235 Introduction to Jewish Thought I 3 hours. Introduces students to the fundamental Jewish texts, theology, and thought of the Rabbinic period (100CE - 900 CE). Topics include: ethics, authority, sexuality, exegesis, and law. Same as CL 235 and JST 235. Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or above.
RELS 240 Philosophy and Revelation: Jewish and Christian Perspectives 3 hours. Introduction to philosophical ways of addressing the claim that a book (the Bible, the Quran) comes from God.  Texts by Immanuel Kant, Moses Mendelssohn, and Soren Kierkegaard, among others.   Previously listed as RELS 141. Same as PHIL 240 and JST 240.  Prerequisite(s): Two courses in philosophy or consent of the instructor.  Individual and Society, and World Cultures course.
RELS 242 The History of Jewish Biblical Interpretation 3 hours. Jewish interpretation of the Hebrew bible. A survey of the span of Jewish history and the wide range of cultural contexts that have impacted the understanding of the Torah.   Same as CL 242 and JST 242. Past course.
RELS 246 Sociology of Religion 3 hours. Analysis of the structures and functions of religious institutions in modern society.Special attention to the interplay between religion and other social phenomena, such as economics, politics, and secular culture. Same as SOC 246. Occasional field trips. Prerequisite(s): One social sciences Course Distribution Credit  (CDC) course and sophomore standing.  Individual and Society, and US Society course.
RELS 250 Eastern and Western Philosophies of Religion 3 hours. Eastern and Western philosophies of religion: Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, and Christianity. Same as INST 250. World Cultures course.
RELS 254 Prophets in Judaism and Islam 3 hours. A cross-cultural survey of prophets. Texts include the Hebrew Bible, the Quran and Islamic and Jewish exegetical material.   Same as CL 254 and JST 254. Past course.
RELS 255 Religious Diversity: Conceptual and Practical Issues 3 hours. The facts of religious diversity and the questions raised by them. Special attention to Catholic Christian perspectives, treating them from secular and other religious perspectives. 
RELS 256 Religious Experiences in American History 3 hours. A survey of the varieties of religious experience in American history from the sixteenth to the twentieth centuries, with emphasis on social and cultural consequences. Same as HIST 256.  
RELS 293 Dante's Divine Comedy 3 hours. An in-depth study of the Divine Comedy, read in English, against the historical, religious, philosophical and cultural background of the Middle Ages. Same as CST 293 and ITAL 293. Previously listed as RELS 193. Creative Arts, and Past course.
RELS 294 Topics in Catholic History 3 hours. An investigation of the impact of human migration and cultural pluralism on Catholicism and an analysis of the role of the Catholic Church in group relations. Topics will vary. Same as CST 294, and HIST 294. May be repeated if topics vary.  
RELS 295 Topics in Catholic Thought 3 hours. Critical investigation of a topic or topics central to the development of Catholic thought, carried on by study of its proponents and opponents. Topics will vary. Same as CST 295. May be repeated if topics vary.  
RELS 311 Gender and Sexuality in Early Christianity and Judaism 3 hours. Examination of the root of contemporary perspectives on gender and sexuality in the early traditions of Judaism and Christianity including the Bible, the Epic of Gilgamesh, the Church Fathers, the Talmud, and legends of the saints.   Same as GWS 311 and JST 311.
RELS 320 Major Religious Thinkers 3 hours. An examination of one or more major/classical thinkers and their writings. May be repeated if topics vary. Prerequisite(s): One 100- or 200-level religious studies course. 
RELS 330 The Quran 3 hours. Introduction to the text, history of interpretation, and the significance of the Quran.   Prerequisites:  Junior standing or above; or consent of the instructor and one 200-level course in Islamic studies.
RELS 343 Literature and Religion 3 hours. Studies in the relation of literature to doctrines, imagery, practices, experiences, or history of one or more religious traditions.   Same as ENGL 343.  Prerequisite(s):  Grade of C or better in ENGL 240; and grade of C or better in ENGL 241 or grade of C or better in ENGL 242 or grade of C or better in ENGL 243.
RELS 392 Major Problems in Religious Studies 3 hours. In-depth examination of a major topic or problem in religious thought. Topics will vary. May be repeated if topics vary. Prerequisite(s): At least one course in religious studies. 
RELS 394 Topics in Catholic History and Culture 3 hours. Exploration of various topics in Catholic history and culture. Same as CST 394, and HIST 394. Prerequisite(s): One course in history or Catholic studies; or consent of the instructor. 
RELS 399 Independent Study 1 TO 3 hours. Selected topics for individual study.  May be repeated to a maximum of 6 hours. Students may register in more than one section per term.  Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or above; and consent of the instructor. Recommended Background: Two courses in religious studies.
RELS 446 Race, Ethnicity, and Gender in American Religion 3 OR 4 hours. Religious institutions in the U.S. as a crucible for racial, ethnic, and gender identities, group formation, and intergroup relations; major world religions represented in the U.S. Same as SOC 446. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite(s): SOC 100 and junior standing or above; or consent of instructor. 
RELS 478 The Bible as Literature 3 OR 4 hours. Literary analysis of the English Bible (including the Apocrypha) in its historical and religious contexts; study of the King James Version and successive revisions of it. Same as ENGL 478, and JST 478. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite(s):  Grade of C or better in ENGL 240; and grade of C or better in  ENGL 241 or grade of C or better in ENGL 242 or grade of C or better in ENGL 243; or consent of the instructor.
RELS 495 Topics in Religious History 3 OR 4 hours. Specific topics are announced each term. Same as HIST 495. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. May be repeated. Students may register in more than one section per term. Prerequisite(s): 3 hours of history or consent of the instructor.