RELS 271
Western World Religions

An analytical and critical study of the phenomena, the conceptual patterns, and the sacred texts of some of the major Western religions. Each religion is studied as a total perspective for life, which is embodied in interpersonal and communal life, in cult, and in ideology. This course provides a general introduction to the study of world religions as well as an historical and structural survey of Judaism, Islam, Christianity and new religions in the West. The subject matter is approached from an emic anthropological standpoint—that is, the history, belief and practice of each religious group will be examined in detail, as if the student was living within that religious context.