05:00 PM to 06:15 PM MW
Section Information for Fall 2020
We will explore the relationship between religion and violence, especially warfare, cross-culturally and historically from a sociological, transdisciplinary, and global politics perspective. The course is organized around three themes: the warrior, the pacifist, and the nonviolent activist. It takes a comparative approach emphasizing the ways in which the world’s major religious and ethical traditions legitimate both ends of a spectrum from holy war to pacifism. Toward the end of the course, we will devote attention to recent developments of nonviolent action as a technique of demilitarized conflict, growing out of religious traditions and embodied in movements symbolized by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. We explore the interface between politics and morality and the interface between national and transnational governance institutions (nation-states, the UN, etc.) on the one hand, and cultural and religious institutions, NGOs, and social movements, on the other.