Religious Studies
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

RELI 235: Religion and Literature

RELI 235-003: Religion and Literature
(Fall 2017)

01:30 PM to 02:45 PM TR

Planetary Hall (formerly Science & Tech I) 124

Section Information for Fall 2017

This section of RELI 235 will focus primarily on the religious literature written by Highland Maya of Guatemala beginning in the sixteenth century. Specifically, the first portion of this course will involve a close reading of the Popol Wuj (an early collection of Maya cosmogonic and theogonic myths). The second portion of this course will then consist of reading comparatively other related sixteenth-century writings about the Maya by Spaniards and Catholic missionaries and then by Highland Maya (including one of the earliest dramas, the Lord of Rab'inal, and early indigenous Mesoamerican land deeds, which includes material from both the Popol Wuj and the Bible). The final portion will consist of a modern memoir: I, Rigoberta Menchú (by the 1992 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate), which will bring many of the aspects initially found in the earlier literature into the late twentieth century and present-day.

Note: Each section of RELI 235 has a very different focus and does not read the same materials. This is the only section with readings of Native American (Maya) religious literature.

Satisfies the general education requirement in literature.

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Course Information from the University Catalog

Credits: 3

Explores the relationship between religion and literature in different times and cultures, the influence of religion on literary works, and how literature expresses major religious themes such as death and immortality, divine will and justice, suffering and human destiny, and religion and state. May not be repeated for credit.
Mason Core: Literature
Schedule Type: Lecture

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