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RLCL 1004
Introduction to Religion and Culture

This course introduces students to foundational concepts and debates within the humanities and social sciences by studying one of a rotating set of themes (e.g. love, evil, apocalypse) located at the intersection of religion and culture. Emphasis on cultural diversity, historical transformation, interdisciplinary inquiry, problem-solving and the application of academic discussions to everyday life situations.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 1024
Judaism, Christianity, and Islam

The nature of "religion," approaches to understanding "religion," traditional and contemporary features of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, including their manifestations in the USA and their involvements in critical issues in a global context.

  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Honors Option Available
RLCL 1034
Religion and The Modern World

Modern challenges to traditional religion and responses to these challenges, including: religion as an object of critique; law, sovereignty, and religion; religion, gender, and race; religion, science, and technology; religion and media presentations.

  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Honors Option Available
RLCL 1044
Religious Ethics

Influential representative social and religious ethical perspectives from the mid-sixties to the present; ethical reasoning on current pressing and perennial social issues based on historical and ethical analysis of case studies; theoretical assumptions about morality as the relation between justice and the good. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
JUD 1104/HEB 1104
Accelerated Elementary Hebrew Language

Fundamentals of Modern Hebrew language with emphasis on grammar, reading, composition, and conversation. For students with no prior knowledge of the language.

JUD 1114/HEB 1114
Accelerated Elementary Hebrew Language

Complementary introduction to the fundamentals of Modern Hebrew language with continued emphasis on grammar, reading, composition, and conversation. This course is for students who have completed 1104 or with permission from instructor. 1114 is a four-credit course with a self-instruction component that demands student time outside of class. Pre: 1104.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 1134/CLA 1134
Introductory Humanities: The Ancient Mediterranean World

Ancient Greek, Hellenistic, and Roman cultures through their embodiments in the arts, literature, history, philosophy, and religion. Emphasis on the interrelationships among the various forms of cultural expressions and material and intellectual encounters among diverse groups in the ancient Mediterranean world. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Honors Option Available
RLCL 1214
Introductory Humanities: The Medieval World

Introduction to Europe and the Mediterranean world in the period between antiquity and the European encounter with the Americas. Investigation of the arts, literature, philosophy, and history of the period in the Christian, Jewish, and Islamic traditions and the multiple types of encounters that those communities experienced. Analysis of the impact the medieval world continues to have on the modern West.

  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Honors Option Available
HUM 1324
Introductory Humanities: The Modern World

The shifts in thought and values during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in the global imagination, including issues of commerce, scientific inquiry, industrialization, nationalism, war, labor, gender, class differences, race, and the beginnings of postmodernity. Emphasis on interpretive and analytic skills in terms of reading, discussing, and writing about the interrelationships among the arts, literature, philosophy, history, religion, and science, and their contributions toward shaping the values and aspirations of the age, including global contexts and Asian cultures. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 1604
Introduction to Humanities and The Arts

Explores the verbal, visual, and aural arts of several important periods in Western history, setting them in the context of their times. Introduces the structural principles of each art form. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
APS 1704/HUM 1704
Introduction to Appalachian Studies

Introduces students to the history of the Appalachian region from European contact to the present. Traces the idea of Appalachia by tracing ways in which Americans have imagined the region over time. Explores humanistic problems of cultural identity, race and ethnicity, place and globalization, and impacts of natural resource extraction.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 1904
Religion and Culture in Asia

Historical and geographical overview of diverse religious/cultural traditions in Asia, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Confucianism, Daoism, and Shinto. Investigation of the categories "religion" and "culture" and their interactions in Asia. Examination of different methodological and interdisciplinary approaches and their integration, with emphasis on critical thinking about the complexities of studying religion and culture in Asia. Asia on a global stage, including Western views of Asia and Asian views of the West. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Honors Option Available
RLCL 2004
Case Studies in Religion and Culture

Significant case studies in the study of religion and culture with an emphasis on influential and emerging research. Focused engagement with humanities and social sciences research grounded in analysis, comparison, and evaluation of relevant case studies. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2054/SOC 2054
Ethnography: Studying Culture

Introduction to the methodological tools used by anthropologists and other social scientists to study culture. Engagement with the development of, and debates about, ethnographic methods, as well as their application to case studies. Focus on analyses of sample ethnographic accounts of peoples throughout the world, as well as research techniques applicable to many different cultural environments. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2104/GR 2104
Greek New Testament

Readings from the New Testament in Greek, with attention to grammatical analysis, historical background and other clues interpretation. May repeated with different content for a maximum of 9 credits. Pre: GR 1106. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2124
Religion in American Life

The role of religion in American life in selected periods from the original settlements to the present; the influence of religious institutions and movements in American history and the impact of the "American experience" on religious life and expression. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
JUD 2134/RLCL 2134
Judaism: A Survey Of History, Culture, and Heritage

Introduction to the academic study of Judaism; a variety of scholarly approaches to Jewish textual and cultural sources, including the Hebrew Bible, rabbinic literature, and diverse contemporary cultural, religious, and social expressions. Emphasis on developing skills in critical thinking, reading, and writing about Judaism as a way of understanding the beliefs, philosophies, and histories of global Jewish communities past and present. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2144/AFST 2144
African Religions

The role of religious (or belief) systems in African societies, especially the three predominant religious traditions in Africa: the so-called African Traditional Religious, Islam, and Christianity; the universe of religious systems and religious experiences and processes of Africa, in particular, Sub-Saharan Africa; critical examination of the mythic stature of Africa's "religions" within Western cultural (and scholarly) world views and institutions.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2204/AFST 2204/WGS 2204
Race and Gender in Religion and Culture

Introduction to how race and gender influence and are influenced by religion and culture. Overview of approaches to categories of diversity, particularly race and gender, in religious and cultural traditions. Utilization of humanistic and social scientific approaches to investigate geographically variable historical and/ or contemporary case studies.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2324

The rise of Islam under the Prophet Muhammad in Arabia and its spread across Asia and Africa. The development of Islam in the middle Ages and its resurgence in the 20th century. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
JUD 2414/RLCL 2414
Hebrew Bible/Old Testament

Introduction to the academic study of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), including its contents, contexts, major themes, and reception; a variety of scholarly approaches, including historical-critical, literary, ethical, and gender studies methods. Emphasis on developing skills in critical thinking, reading, and writing about the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament).

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2424
New Testament

Introduction to the academic study of the New Testament, including gospels, Pauline materials, theological themes, and sources on the emerging church. A variety of scholarly approaches to the New Testament texts and contexts, including historical-critical, redaction critical, and literary methods. Emphasis on developing skills in critical thinking, reading, and writing about the New Testament and the ancient Mediterranean world as a way of understanding the religion and history of early Christianity.

  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Honors Option Available
2444/CLA 2444/ENGL 2444
Greek and Roman Mythology

Surveys ancient Greek and Roman mythology. Provides students with an introduction to selected myths from ancient Greek and Roman literature, including appropriate historical background information. Familiarizes students with how theories of myth have been applied to individual stories and how such mythological tales have been received by authors and artists in subsequent cultures. Explores the interaction and interdependence of mythological tales from different cultures and perspectives. In English. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2464/STS 2464
Religion and Science

Exploration of the relationships between religion and science in the western tradition. Basic frameworks for relationships between religion and science in historical and cultural context, types of human knowledge and truth, similarities and differences between science and religion, evolution, the origins of the creationist movement, and contemporary moral and ethical issues.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2474/IS 2474
Religion and Violence

Investigation of the categories of religion and secularity as they apply to war and peace. Analysis of episodes from both past and present in which religion seems to have played a role. Introduction to research skills related to the study of religion and violence, building from theoretical and historical considerations. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2504/HUM 2504
Introduction to American Studies

Methodology and tools of American Studies, with a focus on developing analytic skills to assess discourse across varied media. Interdisciplinary investigation of histories, politics, cultures, and beliefs in the Americas, including the impacts of encounter and exchange. Intensive study of a specific topic or period.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 2514/SOC 2514
Asian American Experience

Critical overview of diverse Asian-American experience, the complexity of minority status, and meaningful citizenship in the USA. Topics include different historical tracks of various Asian ethnicities, experience of racism, activism, cultural adaptation and conflict, and economic survival and success.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3014/WGS 3014
Women And Gender In Islam

An examination of women and gender in Islam from a variety perspectives including Muslim women in Islamic history, normative constructions of the role of women in Islam, and women's roles in contemporary Muslim societies. Understanding of women in classical Islam; feminist and reformist approaches; and Western constructions of the "rights of women if Islam."

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3024/ENGL 3024
Religion and Literature

Read works from world literature, guided by selected critical readings. Compare/contrast diverse models of "religion" and "literature." Study how modernity has impacted traditions of religion and culture. Interpret literary texts that draw from multiple religions. Analyze religion-literature controversies in a range of social, cultural, political contexts. Synthesize sources of multiple media, formats, and contexts. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3034/COMM 3034/HUM 3034
Theories of Pop Culture

Relationships of popular culture to communication; ways to classify, analyze, and evaluate popular culture; history of main themes with emphasis on the United States; culture evolution of the electronic revolution.

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 3044
Topics Humanities and Arts

Focuses on interdisciplinary topics involving interrelationships among various arts and/or artists. Explores the religious and/or cultural impacts of arts and/or artists on societies and of societies on artistic expression. Investigates humanistic debates about the nature of art. May be taken a maximum of 3 times for credit with different topics. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3144/ENGL 3144/SOC 3144
Language and Ethnicity in the United States

Exploration of how racial and ethnic identity are expressed through the use of different languages and dialects. Examination of how language is related to issues of equality, social opportunity, and discrimination in the United States. Pre: ENGL 1106 or ENGL 1204H or COMM 1016. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3204/COMM 3204/HUM 3204
Multicultural Communication

Exploration of communication in various cultural groups through the medium of performance. Emphasis on understanding cultural differences and similarities in styles of communications, aesthetics, worldviews, and values.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3214
Religion and Culture in India

Interaction of religion and culture from Indus Valley civilization to the present; Brahmanism and Hinduism, the Buddha and his teachings, Parsis, Jains, Sikhs, and their respective literatures and rituals; modern reforms and recent trends.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3224
Religion and Culture in China and Japan

Premodern model of Chinese and Japanese religions: interactions of various traditions (e.g. Confucianism, Buddhism, Daoism, Shinto, and folk); inseparability of religion, culture, society, and politics. Modern reinventions of religion in China and Japan in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Contemporary issues such as state-religion relations in East Asia, religions of China and Japan in America, East Asian religions and globalization.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3404/JUD 3404
Torah and Tradition

Detailed study of the first five books of the Bible, known as the Torah or Pentateuch. Scholarly approaches will include historical-critical research; comparative mythology; form and canon criticism; gender and literary studies; and the reception of these books in the Hebrew Bible, the New Testament, and beyond. Pre: 2414.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3414
Jesus and the Gospels

Academic study of the four canonical Gospels; Matthew, Mark, Luke, John; several scholarly methodologies; the problem of the historical Jesus; noncanonical gospels. Pre: 2424.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3424
Paul and His Interpreters

Academic study of the New Testament letters by or attributed to Paul; historical, literary, and theological context of the letters; classic and contemporary interpreters. Pre: 2424. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 3464/AHRM 3464/APS 3464/GEOG 3464/HD 3464/SOC 3464/UAP 3464
Appalachian Communities

The concept of community in Appalachia using an interdisciplinary approach and experiential learning. Interrelationships among geographically, culturally, and socially constituted communities, public policy, and human development. Pre: Junior standing.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3494/HIST 3494/JUD 3494
The Holocaust

This course provides a historical account, a psychological analysis, and an occasion for philosophical contemplation on the Holocaust. We will examine the deliberate and systematic attempt to annihilate the Jewish people by the National Socialist German State during World War II. Although Jews were the primary victims, Gypsies, people with disabilities, homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses and political dissidents were targeted; we will discuss their fate as well. The class will be organized around the examination of primary sources: written accounts, photographic and film, personal testimony.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3504/HIST 3504
The Age of the Crusades

The origins and development of religious violence examined from an interdisciplinary and cross-cultural perspective; the place of that phenomenon in medieval society. Christianity, Islam, Judaism and their interactions in the medieval world. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3544/JUD 3544/PSCI 3544
The State Of Israel: A Political History

This course provides a survey on the political history of the State of Israel and highlights major themes uniquely characterizing the specific events surrounding its establishment and its first 50 years of existence. Additionally, the course will add a comparative dimension by using the political history of Israel as a case study to discuss major themes in political science such as democracy, government, political, economy, etc. Pre: JUD 2134 or PSCI 1024.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 3604
Islam and The Modern World

Issues facing the contemporary Islamic world, with a focus on the Islamic resurgence and the concept of Jihad. Muslims re-formulate the Islamic tradition as a response to the pressures of modernity.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 4024/SOC 4024
Sociology of Religion

Religion as a social structure as well as an institution; with special attention to the functions of religion for individuals, groups and societies, social organization; and the interplay between religion and other social institutions including economics and polity. Taught alternate years. Pre: SOC 1004. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
APS 4034/SOC 4054
Appalachian Languages and Cultures

An empirical examination of how Appalachian speech both reflects and constitutes regional cultures. Emphasis is on applying sociological and anthropological methods and theories to the study of language in use. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 4034/COMM 4034/HUM 4034
Functions of Popular Culture

Popular culture as a humanistic discipline; emphasis on archetypes, formulas, and genres; the function of ideas, images, and icons on the popular imagination.

  • 3 Credit Hours
APS 4094/SOC 4094
Appalachian Community Research

Undergraduate participatory community research as applied to issues of cultural heritage, sustainability, and identity. Students engage in projects defined by community groups and organizations as being critical to their well-being, continuity, or growth. Emphasis is on developing concepts of civic professionalism and developmental democracy. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 4104
Explorations in Advanced Humanities Topics

In-depth study of special interdisciplinary topic. Topics vary but involve a close and extensive study of the interrelationship between cultural ideas and their expressions in several of the following forms: literature, philosophy, religion, art, music, drama, material culture, and popular culture. May be repeated with different topics, for a maximum of 9 credits.

  • 3 Credit Hours
4124/SOC 4124/WGS 4124
Topics in Culture

Uses sociological, anthropological, as well as artistic and humanist paradigms to analyze culture. Discusses 20th and 21st century cultural trends. Analyzes the implications of social context for cultural artifacts such as art. Topics are variable. Example topics include the cultural construction of race and the culture of the nineteen sixties. Course may be repeated with different course content for up to 6 credits. Junior or Senior standing. Pre: SOC 1004 or SOC 1014 or AFST 1714 or AINS 1104 or RLCL 1004 or RLCL 2004 or WGS 1824. 

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 4324
Topics in Religion and Culture

Selected topics from the religions of the world such as time and the sacred, preliterate religions, women and religion, religion and science, mysticism. May be taken three times for credit with different topics. Pre: 2004.

  • 3 Credit Hours
JUD 4424
Advanced Topics in Jewish Culture, History, and Thought

Selected topics in Jewish culture, history and thought. Possible topics includes: the philosophy of Maimonides, Spinoza or Buber, or a course dedicated to one of the following topics: Kabbalah, Hasidism, The American Jewish experience in the first half of the 20th century, and Oriental Jewish art and folklore. Two JUD courses or senior standing required. Alternate years.

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 4404/APS 4404
Appalachian Folk Cultures

Examination of informal learning systems, non-commodified socioeconomic systems, and traditional aesthetic expressions in Appalachia. Investigation of cultural resistance to globalized market economics as expressed in traditional artifacts and customs. Pre: Junior standing.

  • 3 Credit Hours
HUM 4414/APS 4414
Issues in Appalachian Studies

Topics course that examines major issues affecting sustainability and continuity of contemporary Appalachia. Focus is on problems of exploitation of human and natural resources. Comparison is made to other mountain communities worldwide. Specific topics vary. May be repeated one time with different topics. Pre: 1704.

  • 3 Credit Hours
RLCL 4964
Field Study

Pass/Fail only. Variable credit course.

RLCL 4974
Independent Study

Variable credit course.

  • Honors Option Available
RLCL 4984
Special Study

Variable credit course.

RLCL 4994
Undergraduate Research

Variable credit course.

  • Honors Option Available