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Jacqueline Woolley, Chair The University of Texas at Austin, SEA 4.212, Austin, TX 78712 • (512) 475-7596

Fall 2007

PSY 341k • 17-Psychology of Religion-W

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
45110 MWF
11:00 AM-12:00 PM
SEA 2.108
Domjan, W

Course Description

This course is designed to examine the interaction between psychology and religion from a dual perspective. One focus will explore how psychology can illuminate our understanding of religion. A second focus will consider the ways in which religion influences psychological functioning, by impacting upon beliefs, behaviors and both mental and physical health. Psychology approaches the study of religion from an empirical, not a philosophical or theological, perspective.

Please note that the course will investigate global aspects of religion, such as the development and influence of faith; it is not intended to analyze, contrast, or evaluate specific religious beliefs. The bulk of theory and research in this area concerns the three major monotheistic religions, thus these religions will provide the class context.

Grading Policy

Grades: Each essay will be worth 25% of your grade. The response of Friday questions will count 15% cumulatively to your grade. Class participation will count 10%.

Texts

Atran, S. In Gods We Trust: the evolutionary landscape of religion. Fontana, D. Psychology, Religion and Spirituality. Forsyth, J. Psychological Theories of Religion. Juergensmeyer, M. Terror in the Mind of God. Newberg, Andrew & Mark Waldman. Why We Believe What We Believe. Wallis, Jim. God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and The Left Doesn't Get It.

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