REL-D 350, Religion, Ethics, and the Environment

MW 9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Ballantine Hall 209

Professor Lisa Sideris

COLL (CASE) A&H Breadth of Inquiry credit (not a Gen Ed course!)


This course is built upon an examination of the relationship of humans to the rest of the natural world and its inhabitants.  The course surveys various religious and secular/philosophical schools of thought in environmental ethics (e.g., ecotheology and nature religions, ecofeminism, land ethics, animals rights and liberation, science-based approaches, etc).  Topics concerning ethics and the environment may include: instrumental and intrinsic value in nature and animals; anthropocentrism; individualistic versus holistic ethics; ecological and evolutionary science; obligations to future generations; population; climate change and energy depletion; diminishing species; environmental justice, economics and sustainability.  This class will explore dilemmas associated with these issues, and will provide a forum for students to understand, articulate, and defend their own personal environmental worldviews.  The class will also have a service-learning component.


This course counts in the new BA in Environmental and Sustainability Studies (BAESS) and in the Minor in Environmental and Sustainability Studies.