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Preece, R. London: Pinter Publishers. Thody, A. Writing and Presenting Research. Walliman, N. Your Research Project. Welsh, J. Guildford: Society for Research into Higher Education. Wilkinson, D. The Essential Guide to Postgraduate Study. Wisker, G. The Postgraduate Research Handbook. Tutorial rather than lecture or seminar based, this module provides opportunity to undertake a concentrated and focussed study of a topic, theme or subject which is of interest to the student and for which appropriate supervisory coverage and academic resourcing are available.

Student learning is facilitated by five hours of tutorial support. This module examines the Buddhist scriptures in the Theravada and Mahayana traditions and offers an opportunity for students to understand some of the key concepts and ideas by reading select extracts of the Buddhist texts in English from both schools and traditions. It also allows them to understand the changes in doctrinal emphasis as well as variations in interpretation in the historical development of Buddhism. This module will be a stand-alone module for third year students but will also be accessible to students who are new to the subject.

There are those who claim that religion is little more than a perverse and irrational scar on the modern world, one that invariably causes violence, while others at times driven by political motivations claim that religion is good and that violence only occurs when religion has been hijacked by other forces.

Others still claim that religious violence is a myth constructed for political purposes, and that one should not therefore speak of religion in such terms. In disentangling such claims, this course examines the relationships between religion and violence, asking whether one can draw such associations between the two and whether one can develop any broader theoretical understandings about their relationship that enhances our understanding of religion in the modern world.

It thus challenges students to think through and develop an understanding of these issues. While examining a variety of theories and perspectives on the topic, including close examination of the arguments outlined above, it continually will refer to empirical data and case studies in which religious movements and religious individuals have been involved in violent activities, as well as examining cases where acts of immense violence including genocide have occurred in what appear to be political contexts, but where religious rhetoric may have been used by the perpetrators of violence.

The cases range across time, space and traditions: Judaism and Israel; Christianity and the Spanish Empire; the development of Islam as well as global contemporary issues; and Buddhism in Imperial Japan and lateth Sri Lanka. A concluding case, that of the Bosnian civil war, will examine a specific situation in which political, ethnic and religious justifications for violence were all entangled.

Through discussions and examination of both textual sources and political realities, the course will seek to encourage students to develop an understanding of the debates over the notion of religious violence, formulate their own understandings of the validity of the arguments made by those involved in such debates, and develop an awareness of the possible patterns and processes whereby religion and violence come to be associated in a diversity of ways. In addition to the lectures and seminars, there will be fortnightly seminars specifically for postgraduate students.

The module will examine the cultural and political relationships and intersections between media, religion and politics in national and global contexts. Both old and new media will be considered, and consideration will be given to the transformative potential of the latter for participation and activism in religion and politics. The research methods used for analysing media content and discourse will be introduced and applied. This module allows students to study the nexus of religion, politics and society by way of some of the most controversial and pressing debates of today. By way of these debates, students will be introduced to methods, approaches and theories from the range of relevant disciplines, including the sociology of religion, religious studies, politics, and philosophy.

They will be equipped and encouraged to think about key themes for themselves, in dialogue with existing theories, interpretations and arguments. The approach will be multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary. The teaching will be interactive, and assessment will be by essay, online interaction, and writing a blog entry.

Whether global, national, ethnic or ethical, conflicts frequently involve religion. Between themselves, in their relations with secular states and ideologies, and even at the level of sects or denominations, religions engage in conflict arising from deeply held beliefs and values, as well as in struggles for power, status and legitimacy.

This module provides the knowledge and skills to help students understand and analyse why conflict happens within and between religious groups, and to assess the positive and negative contributions that religions make to wider struggles — from local disputes through to global terrorism. The module is designed to introduce students to key concepts and issues in scholarship on religion and conflict: e. Equal attention will be given to the importance of context — historical, social, geographical and political. Analysis and debate about religion and conflict will be situated in particular cases, from the UK and Europe, the US, the Indian sub-continent and sub-Saharan Africa.

Lecture podcasts and online discussion activities will be complemented by online talks by experts and short films. There will be plenty of opportunities for online interaction with peers and tutors. Cavanaugh, William T. Kaplan, Benjamin J. Cambridge, MA: Harvard. London: Hurst. Murphy, Andrew ed.

Cross-disciplinary perspectives, 1st Edition

Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. This special subject focuses on feminist philosophy, aiming to take participants' knowledge of feminist philosophy and skills in philosophising to advanced levels, led by a tutor who has an active research interest in the topic being considered. Every year the department runs several Special Subject modules in philosophy, in which students engage in depth with research topics chosen by individual members of staff.

These modules offer an opportunity to work on cutting-edge philosophy, in a small group, under the guidance of a subject expert. They are open both to final-year undergraduate students and to MA students under different codes for administrative purposes. Special Subject classes are run as seminars or reading groups: the tutor convenes the group, sets reading, and guides discussion, but does not lecture; students are expected to be active, selfdirected,and well-prepared participants.

Depending on student numbers and timetables, MA students may either take seminars with undergraduates or in their own separate groups. MA students also have their own, further meetings with the module tutor. MA students' assessed work for this module will be marked at the appropriate level, distinct from and higher than undergraduates' assessed work, and requiring a greater degree of depth, independence, and knowledge of the appropriate philosophical literature.

Guidance will be provided. What moral obligations do we have towards future generations -to those yet to be born, and to people whose very existence or non-existence depends on how we act now? This module explores this question by examining both a series of practical case studies and some of the main concepts and theories philosophers use when thinking about these issues. Should we use selection techniques to minimise the incidence of genetic disorders and disabilities in future populations?

Should parents be allowed to determine the genetic characteristics of their future children? How should the interests of non-human creatures be weighed against those of humans? How strong are our moral obligations to prevent extinctions, and to preserve wildernesses? This module will examine philosophical accounts of the imagination. It will look at theories of the nature of the imagination and its connections to other mental states, such as attention, emotion, memory, beliefs, intentions, and desires.

In addition, a range of topics focusing on the role of imagining in a number of different domains will also be explored, including moral judgement, practical reasoning, perception, pictorial experience, and modal thought. They are open both to finalyear undergraduate students and to MA students under different codes for administrative purposes. Globalisation has become a buzzword in the social sciences and lay discourse. It is often related to the speeding up of global communication and travel, and the transnationalisation of economic, political, social and cultural institutions.

The meaning and causes of globalisation are highly debatable. For the purposes of this module globalisation is defined as a complex, paradoxical set of processes, which are multi-scalar, multi-temporal, multi-centric, multi-form, and multi-causal.

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It produces fragmentation and integration, divergence and convergence as well as continuities and discontinuities. Their overall effect is to reconfigure asymmetries of power and knowledge and this in turn raises questions about governance, inequalities, and resistance in and across different parts of the world. Selected themes range from MacDonaldization through to Wal-Martization and the current financial crisis. The course is taught on the basis of ten weekly two-hour seminars with short lectures, a min. The topics include: the world market, finance and production, labour and migration, global cities, global media and global culture, sovereignty and nation-states, global governance, global cities as well as financial globalization and crisis.

Bauman, Z. Globalization and the Nation-State 2nd edition Panitch, L. This module deals with the impact of the Enlightenment upon religious thought in the nineteenth-century. A limited selection of seminal texts will be studied in context and in relation to their later reception. This year, the selection of key texts will be drawn from the works of the following thinkers: Kant, Schelling, Hegel, Kierkegaard and Nietzsche. Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, but changes may be necessary, for example as a result of student feedback, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' PSRB requirements, staff changes, and new research.

The University will not increase the Tuition Fee you are charged during the course of an academic year. If you are studying on a programme of more than one year's duration, the tuition fees for subsequent years of your programme are likely to increase each year. The way in which continuing students' fee rates are determined varies according to an individual's 'fee status' as set out on our fees webpages.

Studying at a UK University means that you need to pay an annual fee for your tuition, which covers the costs associated with teaching, examinations, assessment and graduation. No specific relations can either capture or exhaust any real object. Indeed, in order to clarify this, Harman draws a distinction between the real object and the sensual object.

The real object is what might be referred to as the object-for-itself. The real object is never accessible, either to us or any other object directly. Interactions only take place with sensual objects, and these interactions occur via the specific external relations into which a real object might enter. By way of example, consider multiple interactions with a road-side shrine — a real object.

But all of the contacts are with the sensual object. The real shrine is withdrawn behind all of the interactions. It is never fully deployed in any of them. There is the shrine for the devout pilgrim, the shrine for the questing ant, the shrine for first snowflake of winter, but the real shrine recedes behind these sensual encounters. No total description can capture the real shrine. All of these points can benefit from further elaboration and warrant defence against rejoinders. Harman, for example, has four poles in his account of the nature of objects, encompassing the aforementioned real and sensual objects, in addition to real and sensual qualities, and ten linkages or tensions between them.

Systematically he has worked outwards from this quadruple structure of objects toward intriguing and provocative accounts of causation, space and time. The debates about these objects, though, are ongoing, encompassing such topics as the precise nature of change and relationality and the ethical and political upshot of the metaphysic. For example, Bryant champions different allies than those favoured by Harman, such as Roy Bhaskar, Gilles Deleuze and Niklas Luhmann, and dedicates more space toward theorizing complex and negentropic systems as objects.

However, the anti-correlationist, object-oriented and realist commitments remain the same. The Kantian imposed cycle of critique, with its antirealist closure of metaphysical speculation, is viewed as neither necessary nor a source of philosophical virtue. Converting readers to particular metaphysical frameworks is not the intent of this article. The extensive arguments of Bennett, Harman, Bryant and others need to be individually examined and weighed in this regard.

What is crucial, is that an ethos or promise of doing justice to reality is taken seriously. The proposal is simply that new possibilities of thought may be opened up by shifting emphasis from epistemology to metaphysics. Speculative metaphysics may seem a kind of wager, but its rapprochement with reality may pay considerable returns, particularly when compared with the diminishing returns of anthropocentric critiques. What might any of this mean for the study of religion and gender? What might be the methodological affordances, problems or dilemmas?

A provisional sketch of some directions and research programs is offered in what follows. Rather than attempting to incorporate continental and speculative realism as a whole, its focus is directed toward object-oriented ontology. This choice is based on my familiarity with it and the knowledge that some applications of this approach have already started to appear across the arts and humanities. The 24th Annual Conference of the Society for Literature, Science and the Arts in , for example, featured two panels under the heading of object-oriented feminism, including papers on topics such as Botox and plastic surgery, software design, transgenic technologies, and the corset.

There would seem to be capacity for the implementation of similar approaches at the interface of religious studies and gender studies too. The practical first step toward applying object oriented approaches to the humanities, arts and social sciences is decentring the human. Thus, while the primary subject of analysis in the study of religion and gender may have been gender bias, object oriented ontology requires the displacement of human bias.

This may include: the removal of the human as primary focus of attention; the human as the only or primary source of agency; and the human as the only or primary source of value. What then follows from this decentring? All talk of social constructivism, along with undue attention to the power of discourse, language and text, needs to be set aside and replaced by a far more inclusive constructivism, one that recognizes the contribution of many diverse objects and materials to the constitution of the world.


What objections might arise to these initial points? Two initial ones might be stated in terms of accusations of antihumanism and objectification. That is, the decentring of humans may be identified with a denigration of the human, and the characterization of humans as objects may be viewed as an invidious reduction of humans to the status of objects.

Both of these points can be rather quickly dismissed.

Philosophy and Religion MA | Lancaster University

First, there is nothing in the removal of humans from the centre of analytical, interpretive and methodological frameworks that also attributes a negative value to those humans or else vacates value from the human. Second, accusations of the objectification of humans simply miss the theoretical content of the ontology that is proposed. As Harman elaborates on the matter,.

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  • In fact, they are what resist all objectification. By contrast, object-oriented philosophy is by definition an anti-reductionist philosophy. It holds that all things must be taken on their own terms. My thesis, by contrast, is that even inanimate objects should not and cannot be objectified.

    What, then, of the status of religion and gender in these analyses? Can the specificity of either analytical term be retained when allied and combined with an object-oriented approach? A response to the religious element is perhaps the easiest of the two to formulate. The historical landscape of religious studies has numerous examples of methodological approaches which either encourage the foregrounding of objects in their analyses, or else treat religions as complex objects in their own right.

    The question of whether one can usefully retain gender in an object-oriented analysis is perhaps more contentious. The fact that gender studies start with a human subject implies an already given enthrallment to the correlationism that the speculative turn aspires to bypass. An approach that is opposed to anthropocentrism might be expected to exhibit a disinterest in, or else a distancing from, analyses of gender. What precisely could an object-oriented approach to gender look like?

    The points that follow indicate a way forwards, but they are proposals and hypotheses at best. First, there is no denial within object-oriented ontology that objects are acted upon and affect one another; objects do relate to one another, but they are not defined by, or reducible to, their relations. Second, it remains the case that humans as objects are differentially acted upon in accordance with such factors as the kind of objects that they are — for example, female, male, old, young, diseased, healthy — and also the kind of object that they are identified as being.

    A Cross Disciplinary Approach

    Third, humans are also members of larger objects, such as organizations, religions and societies, just as they are, in part, comprised of smaller objects, such as bacteria and microbes. None of these points denies the existence of gender or rides rough-shod over any specific tools of gender analysis. What an object-oriented ontology does is multiply the number of actants and objects that participate in the construction of gendered individuals. Social constructivism may have accommodated such considerations as age, class, ethnicity, race and sexuality within its analyses, object-oriented ontology ratchets up the complexity and intensity of the constructivism by bringing many additional objects to the table for inclusion.

    The only significant object-oriented discomfort that may afflict students of religion and gender is likely to arise from the point that causal authority no longer rests with the human.

    South Park on RELIGION – Wisecrack Edition

    If implementing an object-oriented study of Roman Catholicism, for example, it might be just as reasonable to be concerned with the affects and causal powers of cassocks, cathedrals and church mice, as with those of clerics, choirs and creeds. Fortunately, studies in this genre are not wholly without precedent within religious studies and the humanities. In the following section I share some research notes on my efforts to import an object-oriented approach into the field of religious studies with which I am most familiar: the Goddess movement.

    This is not, I stress, a neatly packaged case study, it is rather a work in progress that has recently considered object-oriented perspectives in order to see what emerges. The Goddess movement was one of several religious movements that coalesced during the s and s. Its membership was predominantly, although not exclusively, female. They were primarily located in North America, Europe and Australasia, and they shared many demographic features with the New Age, the Pagan Revival and a range of reformist feminist theologies.

    Significantly, though, their overriding concerns were separable from these other movements. Other spiritual matters were secondary. In its formative years, notably the s and s, the Goddess movement exhibited a range of attitudes towards female deity. As Carol Christ summarized in a threefold typology, members of the movement might hold to any of the following views:.

    These perspectives could be elaborated and combined in various ways without disagreements or internal tensions surfacing. Female sacrality, in turn, could be either located within, as an energistic, psychic or archetypal reality, or projected outside, as a transcendent hypostatization of certain female qualities, as a combination of both, such as the life, death, rebirth energy cited above, or else as something else entirely.

    Instead of being something elementally challenging, our spirituality has been subtly absorbed. Instead of being dangerous it has become cosy. My question is: where is the Goddess movement twenty years after this was written? There is no shortage of explanatory frameworks or hypotheses for the changes noted above: many map closely onto wellresearched transitions between second and third wave feminism, the deradicalization of certain social movements, the feminist backlash, the mainstreaming of the New Age, and the ever accelerating commodification of spiritualities. The esoteric values Goddess as an inner reality, a extension of the self, an archetypal or mythic source of power, a spiritual lifestyle choice.

    But how to test this proposal? The most common methods involve gathering quantitative and qualitative social data — and these certainly have their place. An objectoriented approach, however, demands something rather different. Problems quickly surface, though, when attempting to demarcate these religions.

    Add to Cart. Negotiating religious diversity, as well as negotiating different forms and degrees of commitment to religious belief and identity, constitutes a major challenge for all societies. This volume provides multiple perspectives on the processes through which religious communities create or defend their place in a given society, both in history and in our world today.

    Offering a critical, cross-disciplinary investigation into processes of negotiating religion and religious diversity, the contributors present new insights on the meaning and substance of negotiation itself. This volume draws on diverse historical, sociological, geographic, legal and political theoretical approaches to take a close look at the religious and political agents involved in such processes as well as the political, social and cultural context in which they take place. This study will be of interest to academics, lawyers and scholars in law and religion, sociology, politics and religious history.

    He specialises in the early modern and nineteenth century history of Polish and eastern European Jewry.