Both demographic and cultural reproduction pose critical challenges to minority religions, placing pressure on personal decisions, group dynamics, religious practices, and intergroup relations. This course follows the navigation of these pressures by American Jews, and the explores formations of gender and sexuality that result. Topics include marriage, dating and family formation, synagogue life and Jewish ritual, as well as social and political movements that have become vehicles of American Jewish identity: civil rights, second-wave feminism, and Zionism. Readings include works by Riv-Ellen Prell, Lynn Davidman, Joyce Antler and Sarah Imhoff as well as fiction by Philip Roth and Anita Diamant. ... Read more about Gender and Judaism in Modern America
Diasporic Muslim fiction in the West: We will read 21st century novels by writers of Muslim background based in Europe and the U.S.— exploring, among others, themes of border crossings, the Muslim immigrant experience, figurations of gender and sexuality, and representations - and contestations - of Islam in the West. Readings include (provisional list): Ben Jalloun, Leaving Tangier, Hosseini, The Kite Runner, Hamid, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Lalami, Secret Son, Aboulela, Minaret, Jarrar, A Map of Home, Shafak, Forty Rules of Love.... Read more about Religion, Gender, Identity in 21st Century Diasporic Muslim Fiction
The second of two parts, the course will continue to explore the theoretical articulation of sex, gender, and sexuality in feminist and queer theory, with attention to the role of other differences – racial, ethnic, religious, and differences in physical ability – in contemporary work. Prerequisite: REL 1572 or consent of the instructor.
The course will explore the theoretical articulation of sex, gender, and sexuality in twentieth-century theory, particularly in psychoanalysis, philosophy, and feminist and queer theory. Readings will include texts by Sigmund Freud, Simone de Beauvoir, Jacques Lacan, Michel Foucault, Gayle Rubin, Julia Kristeva, Monique Wittig, Judith Butler, Moira Gatens, and others.
The seminar will engage in a feminist reading of Scripture Stories about wo/men in order to trace the cultural imprint of these stories and assess whether they are “good news” for wo/men. Special attention will be given to feminist interpretation, and political-cultural imagination. Discussion will focus on the significance of social location, critical methods, and religious imagination for the interpretation and teaching of these stories about biblical wo/men and their cultural-theological significance for contemporary religious education and ministerial praxis.
This course is an introduction to the field of feminist biblical studies. We will discuss the intellectual history and institutional development of feminist biblical studies around the globe and explore different methods of analysis such as rhetorical, historical, queer, or intersectional kyriarchal analyses. We also will explore biblical women’s stories such as Eve, Sarah, Hagar Mary of Magdala, or the slave girl Rhoda. Lectures, group meetings, discussions, and presentations seek to foster participatory, collaborative and democratic styles of learning.
This course examines recent scholarship on women in American religious history, focusing particularly on questions of narration, agency and power. We will ask several interrelated questions: How have historians integrated women into narratives of American religious history? Whose stories have they highlighted, and why? How have they conceptualized women as historical agents? We will read major interpretive works as well as theoretical accounts of gender, social structure, and power. Readings will explore the diversity of religious traditions in America, including Puritanism, Judaism, Mormonism, Catholicism, African-American Christianity, evangelicalism, and Islam. Jointly offered in the Divinity School as HDS 2186
Ancient Egyptian men and women constructed enduring mortuary monuments, compiled funerary texts, and created elaborate myths & intricate rituals to deal with death. This course explores how women feature in ancient Egyptian conceptions of death, salvation, and the afterlife and whether the Egyptians conceived of gendered pathways to the afterlife.... Read more about Gender and Ritual in Ancient Egyptian Funerary Practices
This course provides an introduction to Christian conceptions of conduct, character, and community, as well as contemporary disputes over their interpretation and application. What do Christian ideals imply for issues related to race, gender, religious pluralism, and secularism?... Read more about Christian Ethics and Modern Society
An extraordinary number of women trained to become photographers in Weimar Germany (1919-1933). Their presence and practices dramatically altered the conditions of visual culture in a country that had never achieved the levels of French modernism, for example, neither in terms of its aesthetic complexity nor in terms of its contributions to nation state identity.... Read more about Women as Photographers in Weimar Germany and in Exile
This course explores histories of women from diverse indigenous nations within the current boundaries of the United States. We will attend closely to methods and sources employed in historical inquiry about Native women even as we track change over time in a range of contexts.... Read more about Native American Women: History and Myth
This course examines recent scholarship on women in American religious history, focusing particularly on questions of narration, agency and power. We will ask several interrelated questions: How have historians integrated women into narratives of American religious history? Whose stories have they highlighted, and why? How have they conceptualized women as historical agents?... Read more about Women, Religion, and the Problem of Historical Agency
In the face of political and social change, and demands for racial, gender and economic justice, religious traditions struggle to respond while maintaining identity. As an example, the Second Vatican Council of the early 1960s brought the Roman Catholic Church to a deeper engagement with modern academic scholarship such as historical critical methods of interpreting texts, environmental and evolutionary sciences’ relation to the Church, and the fundamental importance of modern philosophical and political thought to the institution’s self-understanding.... Read more about Roman Catholic Christianity and Contemporary Crises