PA204 - Colonialism and Religion

The role of religion in the context of modern colonialism has been pivotal. European colonizers, in their global pursuits, consistently justified colonial dominance through Christianity. They sponsored missionary initiatives for conversion, while also regulating the traditions and practices of the colonized. Some scholars assert that modern conceptions of religion and world religions emerged from these colonial conquests. This course is a deep dive into the intrinsic relationship between colonialism and religion, guided by two overarching questions: How did the colonial encounter shape contemporary knowledge of religion? How did colonial tools of governance—such as law, education, census, surveillance, and welfare—bring about changes in the religious beliefs, traditions, and practices of both the colonizers and the colonized? Our exploration spans various modern empires in the Americas, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The course delves into how religion played a constitutive role in modern colonialism, its intersections with other realms of social power like race, gender, and nation, and its influence on resistance to colonialism. Key themes include religious conversion and freedom of religion, reforms within religious institutions, textuality and interpretation, ritual and material cultures, and legal reforms and regulation. Meets the Critical Learning: HP requirement. Meets the Equity and Power: EPG requirement. (Not offered 2024-25).

Degree requirement — Critical Learning: HP, Equity and Power: EPG

1 unit

No offerings are currently scheduled.

Report an issue - Last updated: 05/25/2024