Fall 2008

Anthropology of Religion

Listed in: Anthropology and Sociology, as ANTH-22


Lawrence A. Babb (Section 01)


A survey of anthropological and sociological theories pertaining to religion’s role in human life. The course will examine a range of questions social scientists have asked about religion. What is religion from an anthropological or sociological point of view? Does it have social or cultural functions that account for its near ubiquity? To what extent is the concept of rationality useful or a hindrance in understanding religion? Is rationality itself culturally relative? The course will consider classical approaches to questions such as these, but will also give ample attention to contemporary scholarship. Fall semester. Professor Babb.