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RELIGST 235: Religion in Modern Society: Secularization and the Sacred (RELIGST 335)

What is the status of religion in modern life? Is the modern world "secular" in some fundamental, irreversible way and what does this mean? This course will explore these questions through variety of readings from leading sociologists, philosophers, and anthropologists. Our goal will be to understand in what ways industrialization, political liberalization, the rise of technology, and the success of modern science have been used to support the "secularization" thesis that the modern West rendered religion a thing of the past. A central question to be asked will be: do assessments of the place of religion in modernity necessitate a philosophy of history i.e., a theory not only of historical change, but of the meaning of this change as well?n The course will begin by looking at the origins of the theory of secularization from its beginnings in Enlightenment attempts to understand the meaning of history. We will then turn to contemporary debates over the term "secular" against its counterpart, "religious", and the problems with their application to non-Western societies. We will read works by Talal Asad, Saba Mahmood, Max Weber, Charles Taylor, Jürgen Habermas, and Pope Benedict XVI.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

RELIGST 246: Constructing Race and Religion in America (AMSTUD 246, CSRE 246, HISTORY 256G, HISTORY 356G, RELIGST 346)

This seminar focuses on the interrelationships between social constructions of race, and social interpretations of religion in America. How have assumptions about race shaped religious worldviews? How have religious beliefs shaped racial attitudes? How have ideas about religion and race contributed to notions of what it means to be "American"? We will look at primary and secondary sources, and at the historical development of ideas and practices over time.
Terms: Win | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-ED, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Lum, K. (PI)

RELIGST 255: Religion and Power in the Making of Modern South Asia (HISTORY 297F, RELIGST 355)

This course examines the diverse ways that religious traditions have been involved in the brokering of power in South Asia from the late seventeenth century to the present day. We will examine the intersection of religion and power in different arenas, including historical memory, religious festivals, language politics, and violent actions. At the core of our inquiry is how religion is invoked in political contexts (and vice-versa), public displays of religiosity, and the complex dynamics of religion and the state. Among other issues, we will particularly engage with questions of religious identity, knowledge, and violence. Undergraduates must enroll in RELIGST 255 for 5 units. Graduate students must enroll RELIGST 355 for 3-5 units. HISTORY297F must be taken for 4-5 units.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-GlobalCom, WAY-ED, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SIMILE 93: Science in the Making Integrated Learning Environment

SIMILE is a new residentially-based program organized around the question of when something we might call "science" identifiably began, what it became, and what it might become. While we may believe that science, technology and medicine represent some of the powerful tools we have for making a difference in the world, SIMILE challenges students to consider these as dynamic and changing fields of knowledge which must be understood in their historical, cultural and social contexts. Only then can we consider how new ideas, interpretations, technological artifacts and systems respond to societal needs within the limits of what is possible but also, importantly, in light of what might even become plausible.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-ER, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

SINY 122: The Agile City

Examine the economic, cultural and environmental forces transforming the urban experience globally and understand how cities become agile to adapt to rapidly evolving urban challenges. This course would draw from case studies in New York and elsewhere, using guest experts and site visits or walking tours.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SINY 130: Disrupting the News: How Technology is Transforming the Media

Examine how technology has transformed the way news is produced, delivered and consumed from disruption in business models to changes in access. Students read works by leading media scholars, study user data from news organizations and meet key executives in New York City's digital-media market.
Terms: Win | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SINY 134: The Urban Home Project

Current NYC housing reform goals are mired in politics, real estate development, zoning and bureaucracy. Over a ten week period students will engage in the URBAN HOME PROJECT. The four stages of the course will be to Understand/Locate/Propose/Make. In contrast to current policy strategies, students will explore this subject through an alternative, artistic design lens.
Terms: Aut | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
Instructors: Freedman, N. (PI)

SOC 1: Introduction to Sociology at Stanford

This course to get students to think like a sociologist; to use core concepts and theories from the field of sociology to make sense of the most pressing issues of our time: race and ethnicity; gender and sexuality; family; education; social class and economic inequality; social connectedness; social movements; and immigration. The course will draw heavily on the research and writing of Stanford¿s own sociologist.
Terms: Aut | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SOC 2: Self and Society: Introduction to Social Psychology (PSYCH 70)

Why do people behave the way they do? This is the fundamental question that drives social psychology. Through reading, lecture, and interactive discussion, students have the opportunity to explore and think critically about a variety of exciting issues including: what causes us to like, love, help, or hurt others; the effects of social influence and persuasion on individual thoughts, emotion, and behavior; and how the lessons of social psychology can be applied in contexts such as health, work, and relationships. The social forces studied in the class shape our behavior, though their operation cannot be seen directly. A central idea of this class is that awareness of these forces allows us to make choices in light of them, offering us more agency and wisdom in our everyday lives.nnnThis course is offered for 3-4 units. The 4 unit option has weekly discussion sections while the 3 unit version does not.
Terms: Spr | Units: 3-4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, WAY-ED, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SOC 8: Sport, Competition, and Society

This course uses the tools of social science to help understand debates and puzzles from contemporary sports, and in doing so shows how sports and other contests provide many telling examples of enduring social dynamics and larger social trends. We also consider how sport serves as the entry point for many larger debates about the morality and ethics raised by ongoing social change.
Terms: Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
Instructors: Freese, J. (PI)
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