Collett D. Cox
History of religions, concentrating on religions that have developed in South Asia and East Asia. Primary attention to Hinduism and Buddhism; other important Asian religions are discussed in relation to them, with emphasis on basic conceptual and symbolic structures.
An introductory survey of the significant ideas, images, practices, and institutions of the major religious traditions of India, China, and Japan. We will approach these traditions through reading some of their classic texts, supplemented by lectures, discussion, secondary readings, and films, which will inform us about cultural context, practices, and personal experience. This course will provide an introductory survey of the historical development, significant ideas, practices, and institutions of the major religious traditions of India, China, and Japan.
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
Four hours each week (Monday through Thursday) will consist of lectures, including numerous films. Readings will include both secondary sources and primary texts in translation. The lectures will not only organize materials presented in the readings, but will also provide additional material that will be covered in the examinations. Each topic section is organized around readings in primary text translations, which will be introduced in the lectures. One hour weekly discussion sections will provide the opportunity both to analyze readings further and to discuss other topics.
Since the examinations will be based on materials in the readings as well as presented and discussed during the lectures and discussion sections, reading the assigned materials and participating in the discussion sessions is strongly recommended for success in the course. For each set of lectures,students will be given outlines and suggested study questions, as well as study sheets for each examination.
Class assignments and grading
Readings will be required for each lecture. There will also be two midterm examinations and a final examination containing short answer questions and both short and long essay questions.
Grades will be based on participation in discussion sections, and on the midterm and final examinations.