Notice: All readings will be available on iLearn.
Week 1 Introduction
(Notice- No Tutorials this week)
About the Course and the Assessment
Why Studying Religion
Patterns in the Study of Religion
What is specific about Anthropology?
(no reading for this week)
Week2 Anthropology and Religion
Is Religion a Human Universal?
The Anthropology of Religion
Types of Anthropological Studies of Religion
Types of Religion
Religions versus Religion
Winzler, R.L. (2008) Anthropology and Religion: What we Know, Think, and Question. Ch 1,pp 1-22. Plymouth, UK: Altamira Press.
Week 3 Symbols
What symbols are?
Natural Symbols and Natural Religion?
Geertz, Clifford. "Ethos, world-view and the analysis of sacred symbols." The Antioch Review (1957): 421-437.
Week 4 Myth
What Is Myth?
Theories, Approaches, and Studying Myth
Myth and Gender
Contemporary Urban Myths?
Cohen, P. (1969) Theories of Myth, Man New Series Vol 4 (3): 337-353.
Week 5 Ritual
What is Ritual
Some Common Types of Ritual
Ritual According to Arnold van Gennep
Rites of Passage
Funerals as Rites of Passage
McCauley, R. N. (2001). "Ritual, Memory, and Emotion: Comparing Two Cognitive Hypotheses," Religion in Mind: Cognitive Perspectives on Religious Experience. J. Andresen (ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 115-140
Week 6 Witchcraft and Sorcery
Traditional Witchcraft and Sorcery in Small-Scale Societies
Witchcraft in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe
Modern Witchcraft or Neo-paganism
Stephen, M. (1987) Master of Souls: the Mekeo Sorcerer. In Sorcerer and Witch in Melanesia, Ch 2, pp 41-80. Melbourne: Melbourne University Press.
Week 7 Spirit Possession, Spirit Mediumship, and Shamanism
Spirit Possession and Spirit Mediumship
Shamanism in the Modern World
Cohen, E., & Barrett, J. L. (2008). Conceptualizing spirit possession: Ethnographic and experimental evidence. Ethos, 36(2), 246-267.
Week 8 Gender and Religion
Religion and Women
Religion and non-heterosexuality
Monotheism and gender
Rasmussen, S. J. (1991). Lack of prayer: Ritual restrictions, social experience, and the anthropology of menstruation among the Tuareg. American Ethnologist,18(4), 751-769.
Week 9 (Gust Lecture)
Week 10 Religion and body modification
Bosy, Marks and Ritual
What we can conclude?
Required reading Silverman, E. K. (2004). Anthropology and Circumcision. Annual Review of Anthropology,Vol 33: 419-445.
Week 11 Religion Fundamentalism
Starting from the word
Behaviours and conceptualisation
Cognitive Opening and Cognitive Dissonance
Studying Religious Radicalism
G. Marranci (forthcoming 2016) "Drones, jihad and justice" in G. Marranci, Wars of Terror, London and New York, Bloosblury Academic.
Week 12: Revision and exam preparation (only on iLearn and no-Tutorial)