REL-R 202 –Topics In Religious Studies : DEATH – offered spring 2016

4:40-5:30pm Tuesdays and Thursdays, with a discussion section on Friday.
Fulfills CASE A&H. This course will explore several issues under the broad topic of ‘death.’ In particular we will study various cultural responses to personal death (i.e., one’s own death) and the death of others. We will spend much of the semester thinking about question such as, how have people thought about death? How do people cope with personal death anxiety? How have various cultures dealt with the grief associated with losing someone significant?

 In thinking through these questions we will read the work of contemporary philosophers, anthropologists, and scholars of religious studies. This will involve learning about early China, ancient Greece, and contemporary Europe and the United States. Students who take this class will be able to understand the role of mourning across cultures, analyze various approaches to coping with anxieties associated with death, and think through the ways in which death might influence how people live their lives.