Theological Studies Courses

NumberNameUnitsDescription
THS 161Theology and the Human Condition1Central issues in theology will be raised by asking: What is a human being? What does it mean to be human? Various answers to these questions and the theological frameworks that support them will be examined. In combination with a Philosophy course from the approved list, this course satisfies the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in 100-level theological studies courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Meets the major requirement for an introductory course.
THS 162Theology and the Arts1Central issues in theology will be raised by examining various works of art such as literature, music, drama, film, sculpture, or painting. Various specific framings of and answers to the issues that the works of art offer will be evaluated. In combination with a Philosophy course from the approved list, this course satisfies the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in 100-level theological studies courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Meets the major requirement for an introductory course.
THS 164Theological Perspectives - Nature1Study of central issues in theology through an examination of various concepts of nature, such as those found in the Bible, Origen, Irenaeus, Augustine, and St. Francis. Each concept of nature says something different not just about the natural world, but also about what it means to be human and what our relationship with and responsibility for the natural world should be. In combination with a Philosophy course from the approved list, this course satisfies the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in 100-level theological studies courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Meets the major requirement for an introductory course.
THS 165Theology and Ethics1Focuses on topics and texts in ethics and raises questions everyone struggles with throughout life. What is the good life? What does it mean to be a good person? How do we know what the good is? What is the nature of the good? In combination with a Philosophy course from the approved list, this course satisfies the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in 100-level theological studies courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Meets the major requirement for an introductory course.
THS 166Theological Perspectives on Bodies1Study of central issues in theology through an examination of various perspectives on the meaning of the human body and embodiment. Questions that may be addressed: What does it mean to be embodied? What is the relationship between spirit and body? How do societies interpret bodies? What role do race, gender, sexuality, and ability play in these interpretations? How do our actions and our beliefs serve to harm or care for bodies? What happens to the body when we die? In combination with a Philosophy course from the approved list, this course satisfies the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in a 100-level theological studies course. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Meets the major requirement for an introductory course.
THS 167Foundational Issues in Theology1Addresses some of the fundamental issues in theology. Students critically reflect on various metaphysical, epistemological, and ethical positions and identify the one they find most reasonable. At the end of the course, they will bring together their positions and construct a coherent theological position. In combination with a Philosophy course from the approved list, this course satisfies the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in 100-level theological studies courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Meets the major requirement for an introductory course.
THS 168Theology and the Environment1Central issues in theology will be studied through an examination of various concepts of the physical world, such as those found in the Bible and Augustine. Each concept says something different not just about the natural world, but also about what it means to be human, and what our relationship with and responsibility for the natural world should be. This course is stacked with Phi 168 and therefore must be taken in the same term. Both together satisfy the Examined Life LADR. It meets for two hours a day, 3 ? 4 days a week. Open to first and second year students who do not have credit in 100 - level theological studies courses or 100 ? level philosophy courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year.
THS 169Theology: Arts, Music and Media1Central issues in theology will be raised by examining various works of art from genres such as literature, music, drama, film, sculpture, or painting. Various specific framings of and answers to the issues that the works of art offer will be evaluated. This course is linked with PHI 169 and therefore must be taken in the same academic year as PHI 169. Both courses together satisfy the Examined Life LADR. Not open to students who have credit in 100-level theological studies courses. Must be completed by the end of the sophomore year.
THS 223Religious Autobiographies1This course will reflect on the role of autobiography in communicating religious identity and will investigate how religious belief and practice intersect with race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality. Throughout the semester we will examine experience as a source of religious knowledge and authority. Students will critically reflect on numerous religious autobiographies as well as write portions of their own autobiographical story.
THS 224Great Spiritual Figures1This course will focus on one or more individuals in the history of spiritual reflection who have had a significant impact on the lives of others. Specific figures will differ from year to year. May be repeated for credit with permission of the instructor.
THS 225Great Spiritual Questions1This course will focus on one or more perplexing issues in the history of human spiritual reflection and practice. Specific questions will differ from year to year. May be repeated for credit with permission of the instructor.
THS 226Theologies of Religious Encounter1From its beginning Christianity has developed in contact with other religions, yet today inter-religious encounter is happening in new and more urgent ways. This course poses critical theological questions about such encounters: Can many religious paths be ?true?? If so, how? Does having faith in one religion require us to deny the value and validity of other religious paths? What is the meaning of our neighbor?s faith for our own?
THS 227Feminist Theologies1This course engages a spectrum of scholars across cultures and religions who use the lens of gender to both claim and critically challenge their religious traditions. Along the way, it considers how key themes in feminist thought?e.g., language, embodiment, experience, power, selfhood/subjectivity, sexuality?have shaped the broader development of contemporary theologies.
THS 321Gender/Sex/Fam Judeo-Christian Trad1This course will examine how believers within the Judeo-Christian tradition have defined, negotiated and debated gender, sexuality, and family roles. We will investigate interpretations of sacred texts, theological conversations, historical shifts and ritual life in Judaism, Catholicism, Protestantism and Mormonism.
THS 322Christian Calling1An examination of the idea that God calls human beings to certain ways of living, some of which are universal and some of which are as particular as persons are unique.
THS 325Contemporary Theology1A study of some recent developments in Protestant and Catholic theology. Offered alternate years.
THS 326Sexual Ethics - Christian Trad1A study of many of the issues in the field of sexual ethics, especially as these have been and continue to be shaped by the history and doctrine of Christianity.
THS 327Faith, Hope, and Love1This course explores theological, ethical, and practical dimensions of faith, hope, and love, using both historical and contemporary texts drawn primarily from the Christian tradition.
THS 329Grace & Sin1This course examines the central doctrine Christianity has used to diagnose and describe the human condition. It first traces the history of the doctrine?s development from early Christianity through the Protestant Reformation. It then turns to recent thinkers who consider the doctrine in light of concrete contemporary issues such as trauma and suffering, global economics, and religious diversity.
THS 331Religion in America1This course focuses on the religious history of America from before the creation of the United States up through the present day. It will explore the beliefs and practices of America's religious minorities and those of the Christian majority. As we examine various religious faiths, we will investigate what members of each tradition believe, how they practice their faith and what their experience of America was and is.
THS 332History of Christianity1This course is designed to introduce students to the genesis and spread of Christianity as a global religion. It will focus on internal divisions within the Christian community with an emphasis on debates over orthodoxy and heresy. It will also address Christian encounters with "the other" (other religious traditions, other cultural groups) as it spread its message as a missionary religion.
THS 338Faith in Fantasy and Fiction1An exploration of the way in which authors such as C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, and John Updike address important issues of faith in their fiction.
THS 339An Odyssey to the Holy Land1A study of the geography and history of the Holy Lands with particular attention given to areas within Israel and other Mediterranean countries associated with major biblical figures and events. Satisfies Other Cultures LADR.
THS 341Early Christianity in Italy1An off-campus course in Italy focusing on the development of Christianity in Italy from the apostolic times through the Renaissance with particular attention to religious figures, religious art and architecture, and religious movements.
THS 354Sages & Seers:Israel's Wisdom1A class focusing on various issues which occur in Israel's wisdom and prophetic literature, with particular attention to the emotional and intellectual aspects of Israel's faith.
THS 355Jesus of Nazareth1A seminar focusing on Jesus' life and ministry. Themes and topics vary from semester to semester.
THS 358Geography of the Holy Lands1A survey of the history, culture, topography, and development of societies in the Middle East from the Neolithic period through the present, with particular emphasis on explaining the relationship between the sociogeographical history of the area and the biblical narrative. Satisfies Other Cultures LADR.
THS 412Theological Studies Seminar1Integration of the various components of the major and exploration of advanced methods in theological studies. Prerequisites: senior standing.

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