Department of Religion
College of Arts and Sciences
Web Page: http://religion.fsu.edu/
Chair: Aline Kalbian; Professors: Corrigan, Cuevas, Dupuigrenet, Goff, Kalbian, Kavka, Kelsay, Porterfield, Twiss; Associate Professors: Day, Erndl, Gaiser, Hellweg, Kelley, Levenson, Yu; Assistant Professors: Buhrman, Drake, McVicar; Professors Emeriti: Carey, Jones, Moore, Rubenstein, Sandon
The Department of Religion at Florida State University offers the Master of Arts (MA) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the study of religion.
The Master of Arts (MA) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the study of religion combine broad exposure to the field with the development of a particular area of expertise. Those wishing to obtain information about the Master of Arts (MA) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the study of religion should consult the Department of Religion’s Web site at http://religion.fsu.edu/.
The minimum criterion for admission to the MA program is a “B” average on all undergraduate work and one must also take the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE). For more information on this test, see http://www.ets.org/gre. Students entering the program are normally expected to have background the equivalent of at least an undergraduate minor in the study of religion.
For both degree programs, the department receives applications from more qualified students than can be admitted. Students are advised that acceptance to Department of Religion graduate programs is the result of a competitive process, and that the meeting of minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.
Please review all college-wide degree requirements summarized in the “College of Arts and Sciences” chapter of this Graduate Bulletin.
Master of Arts in Religion
Master of Arts (MA) students concentrate in one of four areas: Religions of Western Antiquity (RWA); History and Ethnography of Religion (HER); American Religious History (ARH); or Religion, Ethics, and Philosophy (REP). Students should indicate their intention to work in a particular area in their application; they may petition the departmental graduate committee to change concentrations prior to the third semester of course work.
During their course of study, students will meet several general requirements. These include: thirty-three semester hours of course work in religion or other approved courses; successful completion of RLG 5035, Graduate Introduction to the Study of Religion; and competence in one foreign language approved by department faculty.
Students will also meet the requirements of their area of concentration. For each of the four concentrations, a “concentration committee” made up of religion faculty exercises oversight. The committee for a particular concentration will advise students concerning requirements for their area, including (for example) specified coursework, a thesis, or additional work in foreign languages. Students should consult the department Web site (http://religion.fsu.edu/) to obtain more detailed information about faculty associated with and requirements for particular areas of concentration.
Doctorate in Religion
Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program include twenty-four semester hours of approved course work beyond the Master of Arts (MA). Upon departmental approval, students then take comprehensive exams. Upon successful completion of the exams, students write and defend a dissertation on an approved topic. Areas of specialization include: Religions of Western Antiquity (RWA); History and Ethnography of Religion (HER); American Religious History (ARH); and Religion, Ethics, and Philosophy (REP). Students should consult the department Web site (http://religion.fsu.edu/) to obtain more detailed information about faculty associated with and requirements for particular areas of concentration.
Definition of Prefixes
HPS—History and Philosophy of Science
Note: Students should contact the Department of Religion office for the most up-to-date information concerning course offerings.
HPS 5340. Freud and the Invention of the Modern Mind (3). This course explores Freud’s life, work, and legacy against the backdrop of the histories of science. The course is built around the close reading of key Freudian texts and is divided into three thematic sections. The first section, Freud as Detective, examines Freud’s case histories and clinical reflections. The second section, Freud as Archaeologist, studies Freud’s attempt to excavate the psychological complexity of everyday life. The third section, Freud as Critic, scrutinizes Freud’s macro-sociological theorizing.
HPS 5345. Power, Knowledge, and Control: Foucault and the History of Human Sciences (3). This course is built around a systematic reading of Foucault’s provocative historical and philosophical reflections on the “all-too human” history of the human and social sciences. Readings include recently-published lectures from Michael Foucault’s tenure at the College de France, as well as texts that have become classics, such as Order of Things and Discipline and Punish.
RLG 5035. Seminar: Introduction to the Study of Religion (3). Graduate introduction to the history, present status, principal issues, and methodologies in the academic study of religion.
RLG 5195r. Seminar: Religion and Culture (3). May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.
RLG 5204r. Readings in Classical Hebrew Texts (1–3). Prerequisites: HEB 2230, or instructor permission. Intensive work on specific religious texts in classical Hebrew (ancient or medieval). Choice of texts will vary by semester. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5292r. Tutorial in Near Eastern Languages and Literature (1–3). Readings of selected religious texts in Semitic languages such as Akkadian, Ugaritic and Aramaic. The languages studied and course content will vary by semester. Previous work in a Semitic language is presumed. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5297r. Seminar: Biblical Studies (3). May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.
RLG 5305r. Seminar: History of Religions (3). May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.
RLG 5318r. Tutorial in Classical Chinese Religious Texts (3–12). Prerequisite: One year of Chinese language or familiarity with written Chinese. This seminar covers selected primary-source readings in classical Chinese about Chinese religions. Readings are drawn from a sampling of historical periods and genres, including canonical literature, philosophical treatises, ritual manuals, poetry, hagiography, and local gazetteers. Students learn to use lexical and bibliographic references, digital resources, and other research tools. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve credit hours.
RLG 5328r. Tutorial in Greek Religious Texts (1–3). Selected readings in Greek of Jewish, Christian and other religious texts from the ancient world. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5332. Modern Hinduism (3). Selected topics on the Hindu tradition in 19th and 20th century India. Includes modern Hindu thinkers, reform movements, popular religion, Hindu nationalism, and pluralism. Attention also to Hindu-inspired religious movements outside India and to other topics of student interest.
RLG 5346r. Seminar: Chinese Buddhism (3–12). Prerequisite: One year reading knowledge of Chinese. Corequisite: One undergraduate level class on Chinese or East Asian religions. This course looks at Chinese Buddhism by way of social and cultural practice; examining the institutional, ritual, and doctrinal components for the construction of Buddhist values, roles and identities within the larger field of Chinese religious life. Special consideration is given to the symbolics of religious alterity, especially as they apply to the negotiation between Buddhist and non-Buddhist traditions. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5354r. Special Topics in Asian Religions (3). This course focuses on selected topics and themes in the academic study of Asian religions, with special emphasis on issues of methodology. Topics may include key theories in Asian studies, religion, philosophy, history, sociology, and anthropology intended to help students develop critical skills. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours as topics vary. May be repeated within the same semester.
RLG 5356r. Readings in Tibetan Religious Texts (3–12). Prerequisite: Basic reading knowledge of classical Tibetan. This seminar covers selected primary-source readings in Tibetan language about the religious history of Tibet. Readings are drawn from a variety of historical periods and genres, including history, biography, Buddhist canonical texts, philosophical treatises, ritual manuals, poetry, and epic narrative. The course also introduces students to various tools and methods for the study of classical and modern Tibetan literature. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5367. Seminar on Shi’ite Islam (3). This seminar focuses on the manifold expressions of Shi’ism from its origins to the present day. It examines the political divisions within the early Islamic community that led to the development of the shi’a. The seminar also examines the earliest Shi’a sects and the major juridical and theological developments within Ithna-’Ashari (“12er”) Shi’ism, such as the doctrine of the Imamate and the occultation and return of the 12th Imam. The seminar also studies the establishment and elaboration of Fatimid Isma’ilism. The latter part of the seminar is devoted to contemporary issues among the Shi’ites, including contemporary treatments of the martyrdom of Hussayn and the role of Hizbullah in the politics of the Middle East.
RLG 5368. Islam in North America (3). This course surveys in seminar format the manifestations of Islam in the United States, as well as American perceptions of Islam and Muslims. The course begins with the early eighteenth century and examines early American attitudes toward Muslims, and then moves to the experience of Islam among African-Americans. The latter third of the course is devoted to the assimilation of Muslim immigrants in the US, and how the issues of race, gender, “trans-nationalism” and stereotypes impact the American Muslim community.
RLG 5486. Religious Thought in America (3). The classic theological traditions in American religion from Puritanism to contemporary theology. Emphasis will be on Protestant thought, but attention will be given to representative Roman Catholic and Jewish thinkers.
RLG 5497r. Seminar: Religious Thought (3). May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.
RLG 5514. Christianity in Late Antiquity (3). Christian thought, institutions, lifestyles, and literature in their social, cultural, and historical contexts from the time of Jesus to the early Middle Ages.
RLG 5516. Christianity after the New Testament (3). Prerequisite: REL 2240 or instructor permission. The course covers major developments in the history and theology of Christianity in the first three centuries of the common era.
RLG 5562. Modern Roman Catholicism (3). The Catholic Church from the Council of Trent to the present day; special consideration given to Vatican II, current problems, and leading thinkers.
RLG 5612. Judaism in the Graeco-Roman World (3). A history of the Jews and the development of Jewish religious ideas, literature, institutions and practices from the Maccabean Revolt to the redaction of the Babylonian Talmud.
RLG 5616. Modern Judaism (3). The development of Judaism as a religious and cultural phenomenon in Europe, North America, and the Middle East from the European Enlightenment to the birth of the State of Israel.
RLG 5906r. Directed Individual Study (1–3). May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5910r. Tutorial in Pali (1–3). A study of the grammar, vocabulary and style of the Pali canon to better understand both the Buddhist philosophical concepts and the culture of ancient Buddhist India. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5911r. Supervised Research (1–3). (S/U grade only). A maximum of three hours may apply to the master’s degree. May be repeated to a maximum of five semester hours.
RLG 5915r. Tutorial in Sanskrit Texts (1–3). Prerequisite: SAL 4101, or equivalent. Readings in Sanskrit of selected religious texts. Topics will vary by semester. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5916r. Tutorial in Latin Religious Texts (1–3). Readings in Latin of selected religious texts. Topics will vary by semester. A basic knowledge of Latin grammar is presumed. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5937r. Special Topics in Religion (3). May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 5940. Supervised Teaching (3). (S/U grade only). A maximum of three hours may apply to the master’s degree.
RLG 5971r. Thesis (1–6). (S/U grade only). A minimum of six semester hours is required.
RLG 6176r. Seminar: Ethics and Politics (3). Seminars in ethics and politics encourage research into the relationships between religion, morality, and the social-political life of persons and groups. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 6298r. Seminar: Scriptures and Interpretation (3). Seminars in scriptures and interpretation encourage research in selected aspects of the interpretation of sacred texts in a particular tradition or traditions. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 6498r. Seminar: Religious Thought (3). Seminars in religious thought are designed to encourage research in the area of religious thought through inquiry into specific themes, persons, or movements. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours. May be repeated within the same term.
RLG 6596r. Seminar: Religious Movements and Institutions (3). Seminars in religious movements and institutions encourage research in selected religious movements and institutions in a religious tradition. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.
RLG 6904r. Readings for Examination (1–12). (S/U grade only). This course is designed for graduate students who have completed all of their required course work and are preparing for their examinations. May be repeated to a maximum of twenty-four semester hours.
RLG 6980r. Dissertation (1–12). (S/U grade only). May be repeated to a maximum of twenty-four semester hours.
RLG 8964r. Preliminary Doctoral Examination (0). (P/F grade only.) May be repeated in the same semester.
RLG 8966r. Master’s Comprehensive Examination (0). (P/F grade only.)
RLG 8976r. Master’s Thesis Defense (0). (P/F grade only.)
RLG 8985r. Dissertation Defense (0). (P/F grade only.) May be repeated in the same semester.
SRK 5236, 5237. Intermediate Readings in Sanskrit I, II (3, 3). Introduction to Sanskrit reading through a study of grammar, syntax, and vocabulary
see also Asian Studies
RESEARCH AND EVALUATION METHODS
see Educational Psychology and Learning Systems