This course is an introduction to major world religions from an academic perspective. Religions will be studied as intellectual systems and intellectual foundations, beliefs and rituals will be examined. We will examine the social and historical contexts surrounding the evolution of each religious tradition as well as discussing the relevance of religion in modern life.
This course introduces the lands, cities, and peoples associated with the Hebrew and Christian scriptures. Using methodologies from historical geography, archaeology, ancient history, epigraphy, and anthropology, you will learn about the Fertile Crescent, from the Nile Valley, through the Levant and its Jordan River valley, to Mesopotamia--the river valleys of the Tigris and Euphrates, studying the cities and states of the cultures along these rivers in the Bronze and Iron Ages.