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Religion and Culture (Postgraduate Certificate)

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  • Objectives
    This new award is designed to provide an advanced introduction to studying religion, culture and society in the contemporary world. As a whole, the programme will help you to think about questions such as: -What is religion? Are concepts like ‘religion’ or the ‘sacred’ simply the invention of a particular tradition of scholarship, or can they be genuinely useful for analysing culture and society? -How does religion adapt to the cultural conditions of late modern society? -What forms of religion seem more likely to flourish in these cultural conditions? -Is there an inherently religious dimension to human life, and if so, how can we define it or study it empirically? -How do new forms of media transform the ways in which people understand and practice religion? -How might the study of lived religion help us to develop better theoretical understanding of the nature of religion in the contemporary world? -Does the media and popular culture serve some kind of religious function in post-Christian societies? The programme is designed to be useful for anyone wanting to think more about the nature and significance of religion in today’s world, but may also be useful for anyone wanting to prepare for doing an MPhil or PhD in religion and contemporary society. Students who successfully pass the modules on this programme may progress on to the MA in Religion, Culture and Society, that will be offered by the College from autumn 2009.
  • Entry requirements
    Entry requirements Good first degree in relevant humanities or social sciences subject.
  • Academic Title
    Religion and Culture (Postgraduate Certificate)
  • Course description
    The programme is taught through two core modules:

    -Studying Religion and Culture in the Contemporary World: this module offers an overview of key theories and debates about the nature of religion, and how religion is bound up with the processes and structures of modern society.
    -Religion, Media and Cultures of Everyday Life: this module builds on the broad introduction to examine more specifically the ways in which religion is addressed in the media, the ways in which religious groups use media, everyday forms of lived religion, and religious dimensions of media and popular culture.

    One evening’s teaching per week over two terms, though students will be expected to do reading and other study tasks in preparation for the taught sessions. 

    When to apply
    Early applications are recommended, and interviews will begin in spring 2008, but later applications will also be considered, subject to availability of places.

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