In this course, students will explore what late twentieth and twenty-first century American religious life looks like from the perspective of women’s everyday lived experience. We will examine women’s participation in a range of traditions, including the so-called Abrahamic faiths and eastern religions, as well as a range of Afro-Caribbean, neo-pagan, New Age, and metaphysical traditions. In addition, we will consider the religiousness of practices that are usually categorized as non-religious, profane, or even anti-religious, including feminist activism, diet culture, sexuality, military service, and the cult of the Kardashians. By studying these topics, we will analyze the categories of “religion,” “gender,” and even “America.” The course will combine lecture and discussion and our readings will include both scholarly and primary source material. A final project will give students the opportunity to do their own research on women and religion in America.
Honors option credit available