Religious Studies

RELS 101 The Bible: Texts and contexts

The first in a two-course sequence of selected topics that enables students to develop critical knowledge of biblical texts and post-biblical traditions by helping them understand how these works and their histories of reception inform interpretive contexts. Students will acquire skills in critical thinking, analysis, reading, and writing that will equip them to recognize the relevance of the academic study of biblical texts and religion.

RELS 102 The Bible: Texts and contexts

This is the second of a two-course sequence of selected topics enables students to develop critical knowledge of biblical texts and post-biblical traditions by helping them understand how these works and their histories of reception inform interpretive contexts. Students will acquire skills in critical thinking, analysis, reading, and writing that will equip them to recognize the relevance of the academic study of biblical texts and religion.

RELS 210 History of Christian Thought

The faith of the earliest New Testament communities will be examined, and developments in biblical theology from the early church onward will be considered.

RELS 211 Contemporary Theology

A survey of the major issues and figures in theology in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The course focuses on the special challenges to theology posed by the modern world.

RELS 214 Early Christian Literature

A study of selections from the early Greek Fathers (e.g., Clement of Rome, Ignatius of Antioch, and the Epistle of Barnabas) whose writings extend the biblical tradition into the second century CE and mark a formative stage in the development of Christian creed and canon.

RELS 231 Faith, Health and Justice

Community-integrative course that examines the complex relationships between race and social class, access to health care, religious faith, and health outcomes. Students will serve in placements that allow them to study faith-based community agencies that aim to promote health equity and to redress health disparities in Memphis.

RELS 233 Pain, Suffering, and Death

A seminar that examines critical issues and problems of crisis experience involving pain, suffering, and death using various disciplinary perspectives and pedagogical methods, including interviews with health care professionals. Designed primarily for students considering health or human service vocations (e.g., medical professions, counseling, social work, ministry), but also of interest to others.

RELS 251 Religion in America

A historical analysis of American religion, examining the diversity of religions in America through the study of selected beliefs, practices, and institutions.