Single Tradition Final Project (REL 1003)

August 1, 2009

August 1, 2009

Single Tradition Final Project

Please select one religious tradition (i.e. religion) around which to build a “single tradition final project,” in order to more deeply explore thematic dynamics raised throughout this course.  If you personally consider yourself to be a “member” of a religious tradition please select one that is not your own.  Examples of religious traditions that might be selected include Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Sikhism, Jainism, and Shinto.

After selecting one tradition (i.e. religion) please employ at least two phenomenological categories as lenses for interpreting and analyzing aspects of the chosen tradition.  Examples of these categories include Sacred Space, Sacred People, Stories, Teachings, Texts, Commentary, Myth, Silence, Rites of Passage, Ritual Practices, Pilgrimage, Sacred Communities, Responses to Evil, Rules of Behavior, Evangelizing, Religious Violence, Death, and Salvation / Liberation.

Your single tradition final project should be 5-7 pages in length (typed, doubled-spaced, standard margins, etc.) and should provide critical interpretation and analysis of how the chosen phenomenological categories function / operate within the given tradition. 

Examples: Christianity – The Bible as authoritative text, Baptism as a rite of passage
Buddhism – Meditation as a ritual practice, Precept against taking life as a rule of behavior
Islam – The Hajj as sacred pilgrimage, the function of a mosque as sacred space

Strong projects will be quite specific when describing a given tradition (i.e. if possible please focus on a particular sectarian expression of the given tradition; Examples – Shi’a Islam, Zen Buddhism, Reformed Judaism, Baptist Christianity, etc.), and when describing the function / role of the chosen phenomenological category.  This will allow for greater depth of explanation and interpretation.

Strong projects will have a clear articulation of a thesis statement / central argument, will do more just than provide facts and information, and will attempt to incorporate insights garnered from in-class lectures and discussions.  You are encouraged to use our course textbooks (The Sacred Quest and Introducing World Religions) as your primary sources, but you are required to also use at least one other outside source (ex: book or journal article) to inform your project.  Please provide a bibliography of works cited and footnotes or endnotes for any direct quotations.

The “single tradition final project” is due in hardcopy form on the last day of class.  No electronic or digital copies of your project will be accepted.  This final project is worth 20 points (20% of your final grade).

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