Read Microsoft Word - 343_2006.syl text version

Anthropology 343

Anthropology of Religion Course Information, Syllabus and Calendar

Fall Semester 2006 Prof. Frank Salomon 5448 Social Sciences EMAIL: [email protected]

I. Course Plan The course has two objectives: The first objective is to address the root question " Why is there any religion as opposed to no religion?" In other words, why do cultures construct the domain of the sacred? Anthropological theory offers several penetrating answers. We will examine an original source for each one; then we'll study at least one recent work which develops its insights. The goal is to discover the powers and limitations inherent in each major theory of human religiosity. Theory readings are short and concentrated, under 100 pages per major topic. The aim is to read a little and think a lot. The second objective is to explore religious diversity through innovative ethnographies. We will use anthropology as a double way of knowing religions: as observers, and as if "from within". The central issues are, "how do ways of sacred action embody unique powers and meanings?" "In what sense can we ever know other people's religious lives?" "How does religion create, uphold, or subvert social order?" Ethnography readings are longer and more rounded. We'll strive to read as a critic does: find the ideas that underly the ethnographer's vision of a people and find out what possibilities these ideas open or close. Along the way we will highlight topics about religions which have proven cross-culturally revealing: for instance, religion and holy war, religion and peacemaking, cultural revivalisms, mystic and visionary religion, ancestor worship; shamanism, sorcery, and healing; scripturalism and "world religions"; secular religion, fundamentalism, relativism, and the place of religion among other "ways of knowing." Grad vs. Undergrad participation: Anthropology 343 is open to both levels, but they won't be judged by the same standard. 1

For specific requirements see separate "Course Requirements" handout.

2

II. Book Purchases

Required Books FOR ALL STUDENTS: Brown, Michael F. : The Channeling Zone : American Spirituality in an Anxious Age. Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 1997. Conklin, Beth: Consuming Grief. Compassionate Cannibalism in an Amazonian Society. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2001. Cunningham, Graham: Religion and Magic. Approaches and Theories. New York: New York University Press, 1999. Danforth, Loring M.: Firewalking and religious healing. The Anastenaria of Greece and the American Firewalking Movement. Princeton: Princeton U. Press, 1989. Heilman, Samuel: Defenders of the Faith:Inside Ultra-Orthodox Jewry. New York: Schocken Books, 1992. http://www.netlibrary.com. Salzman, Mark: Lying awake. New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2000. Course Reader: Anthropology 343, Anthropology of Religion at the Social Science Copy Center.

Additional Optional Purchases mostly FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS: (Reserve copies will also be available) Bloch, Maurice: Prey into Hunter. The Politics of Religious Experience. Cambridge University Press, 1992. Boyer, Pascal: Religion Explained. The Evolutionary Origins of Religious Thought. New York: Basic Books, 2001. Lambek, Michael: A Reader in the Anthropology of Religion. London: Blackwell, 2002. Morris, Brian: Anthropological Studies of Religion. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987.

3

III. Syllabus-Calendar DUE DATES ARE BOXED EXTENSIONS BY PRIOR ARRANGEMENT ONLY

NOTE:Readings are to be read by the respective calendar date (except week 1).

Week 1 Sep.5 The theme and problem of "religious experience" VIDEO Holy Ghost People

Sep.7

READER

James, William: Varieties of religious experience [1901-1902]. Cambridge: Harvard U. Press, 1985. Pp. 301-339. Salzman, Mark: Lying Awake. New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2000.

NOVEL

Week 2 Sep.12 "Homo religiosus": Comparative Religion approaches READER Eliade, Mircea: The sacred and the profane New York: Harcourt Brace & World, 1959. Pp. 68-113.

Sep.14

...But isn't there something wrong with the concept "Religion"? READER: Ruel, Malcolm. Christians As Believers [1982]. In A Reader in the Anthropology of Religion. Michael Lambek, ed. London: Blackstone, 2002. Pp. 99-113.

Week 3 Sep.19 Religion as the sacrality of socialness: The functionalist sociological tradition TEXT READER Cunningham pp.42-53 Durkheim, Emile: Elementary Forms of the Religious Life [1915]. Mary Douglas: The abominations of Leviticus [1966]

READER

Sep.21

4 Proposal for ethnographic report due

VIDEO

In the Name of God

Week 4 Sep.26 VIDEO An Initiation Kut for a Korean Shaman

Sep.28

ETHNOGRAPHY Danforth, Loring M.: Firewalking and religious healing. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989.

Week 5 Oct.3 Religion as knowing beyond knowing: the sacred as ecological adaptation READER Oct.5 Rappaport, Roy: Ritual, sanctity, and cybernetics [1971].

Religion as the dynamic of knowing and not-knowing: Marxism and the materialist tradition READER Marx, Karl: Criticism of religion... [1843]. . In Karl Marx: On Religion. Saul K. Padover, ed. New York: McGraw Hill, 1974. Pp.35-37. Cunningham p. 1-9 (GRADS ONLY) Elster, Jon: Making Sense of Marx Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985. pp. 476-482, pp. 476-482, 504-510.

TEXT READER

READER

Bloch, Maurice. The past and present in the present. Man (N.S.) 12:278-292, 1977.

ETHNOGRAPHY

(GRADS ONLY) Bloch, Maurice: Prey into Hunter. The Politics of Religious Experience Cambridge: Campbridge University Press, 1992.

Week 6 Oct.10 Oct.12 REVIEW [FS absent; to be proctored:] FIRST EXAM Week 7 Oct.17 Religions as humanly-made transformations of consciousness: Historicistic sociological traditions and their evolutionary variant TEXT Cunningham pp. 9-13

5

READER

Weber, Max: The Protestant sects and the spirit of capitalism (and) Religious rejections of the world and their directions [1915]. In Max Weber: From Max Weber. H.H. Gerth and C. Wright Mills, eds. New York: Oxford U. Press, 302-359.

Oct.19

READER

(GRADS ONLY) Hefner, Robert: "Introduction: World-Making" In Robert W. Hefner, ed: Conversion to Christianity. Historical and anthropological perspectives on a great transformation. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993. pp.3-44. Ranger, Terence: "The local and the global in Southern African religious history" In Robert W. Hefner, ed: Conversion to Christianity. Historical and anthropological perspectives on a great transformation. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993. pp.6598.

READER

READER

Bellah, Robert N. Civil Religion in America [1967].. In A Reader in the Anthropology of Religion. Michael Lambek, ed. London: Blackstone, 2002. Pp. 512-522. Harding, Susan F.: Convicted by the Holy Spirit. The Rhetoric of Fundamental Baptist Conversion. American Ethnologist 14(1):167-181, 1987.

READER

Week 8 Oct.24 Religion and myth as the laboratory of deepest logic: The structuralist tradition and its mutations TEXT READER Cunningham pp.86-95, 59-64

Lévi-Strauss, Claude: The bear and the barber [1963].

Oct.26

ETHNOGRAPHY Conklin, Beth: Consuming Grief. Compassionate Cannibalism in an Amazonian Society. Austin: University of Texas Press. 2001.

Week 9 Oct.31 Religion and symbolism as the making of meaningful worlds: The hermeneutical or interpretativist tradition TEXT READER READER Cunningham pp.71-73 Geertz, Clifford: Religion as a cultural system [1965]. Asad, Talal: Anthropological conceptions of religion:

6

reflections on Geertz. Man 18(2):237-239, 1983. Nov.2 Week 10 Nov.7 Religion and ritual as the theater of societies making themselves: The symbolicaction tradition TEXT READER Cunningham pp. 58-59, 65-71 VIDEO Mammy Water

Turner, Victor: The ritual process [1969]. READER Ortner, Sherry: On key symbols. [1973]

Nov.9

ETHNOGRAPHY

Heilman, Samuel: Defenders of the Faith:Inside UltraOrthodox Jewry. New York: Schocken Books, 1992.

Week 11 Nov.14 Nov.16 SECOND EXAM Week 12 Nov.21 Religion as explanation or "science": The intellectualist tradition TEXT READER Cunningham pp.15-22, 77-85 (GRADS ONLY) Tylor, Edward B.: "Animism" from Primitive Culture [1874]. Evans-Pritchard, E.E.P.: Witchcraft explains unfortunate events [1937]. READER Thanksgiving; Thursday Nov. 23 off REVIEW

READER

Week 13 Nov 28 FILM "Azande Witchcraft"

Nov.30 Draft Ethnographic Report due

7

Religion and the inner cost of the social: The Freudian psychological tradition TEXT Cunningham pp.23-31

Week 14

A return to the problem of experience: cognitive and evolutionary-psychological approaches Dec.5 TEXT READER Cunningham pp. 96-101 Guthrie, Stewart: The Origin of an Illusion. In Anthropology of Religion, a Handbook, edited by Stepehn D. Glazier. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1997. Pp. 489- 504. Atran, Scott: In Gods We Trust. The Evolutionary Landscape of Religion. New York: Oxford, 2002. Pp. vii-xi and 3-18.

READER

READER

Winkelman, Michael: Altered States of Consciousness and Religious Behavior. In Anthropology of Religion, a Handbook, edited by Stepehn D. Glazier. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1997. Pp. 393-428. (GRADS ONLY) Boyer, Pascal: Religion Explained. The Evolutionary Origins of Religious Thought. New York: Basic Books, 2001.

Dec.7

ETHNOGRAPHY Brown, Michael F. : The Channeling Zone : American Spirituality in an Anxious Age. Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 1997.

Week 15 READER

Believable ethnography and the beliefs of the ethnographer Gellner, Ernest: The Uniqueness of Truth. Oxford: King's College Chapel, 1992.

Dec.12 Final due Dec.14 Ethnographic Report

REVIEW AND FINAL DISCUSSION.

ALSO READING RECORDS DUE

8

FINAL EXAM TBA

9

Information

Microsoft Word - 343_2006.syl

9 pages

Find more like this

Report File (DMCA)

Our content is added by our users. We aim to remove reported files within 1 working day. Please use this link to notify us:

Report this file as copyright or inappropriate

553121


You might also be interested in

BETA
vrvflore45.PMD
Microsoft Word - Bibliography of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
Rev.PDF