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Level 4

4AAT1830 Introduction to Religion and Politics


The modules run in each academic year are subject to change in line with staff availability and student demand so there is no guarantee every module will run. Module descriptions and information may vary depending between years.

Credit value: 15
Module tutor: Dr Daniel Nilsson DeHanas
Assessment: one three-hour examination (100%).  Students are also expected to complete one formative essay.

Students are reassessed in the failed elements of assessment and by the same methods as the first attempt.

Teaching pattern: one two-hour weekly lecture over ten weeks.
Pre-requisites: none

This is a core introductory module for students studying the BA Religion, Politics and Society, and an optional module for other programmes in the department. It offers an introduction to a series of theories and debates within the interdisciplinary study of religion and politics, with particular emphasis on political science perspectives. It introduces students to approaches to analysing and critiquing the way in which authority is constructed in the secular and religious spheres and presented through institutions such as government, church, civil society, and international forums. Moreover, the module develops students' understanding of how power, authority, competition and identities are conceived in the modern world. Topics include the history of church-state relations, religion in the modern state, the role of religion in processes of democratisation and socio-economic change, and religion and political participation and mobilisation.

Further information

Module aims
  • to develop students’ ability to make observations and relate them to theoretical knowledge
  • to develop their capacity to assess academic sources critically
  • to improve their analytical, argumentative and oral skills
  • to create a foundation for further explorations of the contemporary issues and trends in the relationship between religion and politics in more advanced modules
Learning outcomes
  • to introduce students to political concepts, theoretical frameworks and key case studies that will enable them to understand the relationship between religion and politics in the modern world
  • to help students analyse different dynamics and institutional patters in which religion can influence politics, and politics can impact on or utilise religion
  • to provide students with a perspective on the interface between politics and religion that is historically grounded
  • to raise an awareness of differences and similarities of various kinds of patters, developments and political realities in politics and religion across the globe in order to facilitate comparative analysis   
  • to develop student’s ability to analyse politics and religion from a political science perspective
Past syllabi

Please find the syllabus document available here for the academic year 2015-16.

Please note that module syllabus and topics covered may vary from year to year.




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