REL 1121 Religion and American Public Life

This course explores the contentious place of religion in American public life. What roles do religious organizations and religious motivations play in the public arenas of electoral politics, policy-making, schools, courts, social service delivery, media, and marketplace? What roles ought they to play? In a pluralistic society, how are Americans to balance diverse moral positions with our shared civic life? Engaging the insights of sociologists of religion, legal scholars, ethicists, political theorists, and cultural critics this course refines the language with which we address such broad questions. Students apply those insights to focused critical analyses of issues they choose.
3 credits