Your choice increases with a wider range and availability of optional modules.
The Work Placement module allows you to gain workplace skills and develop your CV.
Religion in Britain: Interfaith Encounters in a Secular Age
Explore the landscape of religions in modern British society, with particular emphasis on:
You'll be introduced to leading theories of the sociological study of religion, including models for interfaith contact and dialogue, and examine how these theories and approaches developed.
Through groupwork you'll research an interfaith topic for a class presentation, learning to communicate your ideas to a supportive audience.
This module is worth 20 credits.
Virtue Ethics and Literature
Virtue ethics is an ancient form of moral practice, which has also come back into prominence in recent years. It believes that ethics belongs to the lived experience of a tradition and is therefore narrative in character, offering itself naturally to literary embodiment. We shall study key ancient Greek texts, such as Aristotle's Nichomachaen Ethics and Theophrastus' work on character, as well as Cicero, Aquinas and contemporary reconsturals of the virtue tradition by Alasdair MacIntyre and Stanley Hauerwas. Virtue ethics will then be analysed in literary texts, such as Homer's Iliad, the medieval poem, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Jane Austen's Mansfield Park and Graham Green's Brighton Rock. Students will also do a short presentation, applying virtue ethics to a particular moral problem or specific form of activity, e.g nursing, war, or teaching.
Watch Professor Alison Milbank give an overview of this module in less than 80 seconds.
20th Century Theology
Examining the major theologians of the last century this module will ask – what is nature, and what is grace? Likewise, what is natural and what is supernatural? This module will explore how theologians (Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox) have articulated this division and the many profound consequences that have arisen from such attempts This module will trace the development of various heated debates that tackled the above questions and in so doing influenced the shape of twentieth century theology, the idea of secularism, the relation between philosophy and theology, and lastly, between theology and science.
Religion and Fantasy
- explore the rise and development of the fantasy genre in its historical and theological context
- investigate the contemporary critical debate about the value and function of religious fantasy.
Authors covered may include:
- George MacDonald - Christian Platonism in a short tale
- G. K. Chesterton - The Man Who Was Thursday and his essay, 'Orthodoxy'
- Charles Williams - The Descent into Hell and his theology of exchange
- J.R.R. Tolkien - Lord of the Rings and his essay 'On Fairy-Stories'
- C.S. Lewis - Out of the Silent Planet
- a collection of modern Jewish fantasy tales, Wandering Stars.
Muslims and Others: Ethics, Theology, and History
Examine the ethical, theological, and historical aspects of Muslim interaction with non-Muslims.
- assess Qur’anic attitudes to religious others
- look at a spectrum of Muslim ethical approaches to social relations with non-Muslims
- analyse theological exchanges with Christians and Jews
- explore Muslim theologies of other religions and the eternal destiny of non-Muslims
- examine shifts in Muslim relations with Christians, Jews and Yazidis in response to modernity and the rise of western power.
Students will read the novel The Qadi and the Fortune Teller set in 19th century Lebanon as a case study in legal, political, and religious relations between Sunnis, Shi‘is, Druze, Christians, and Jews.
The Life and Teaching of Jesus
This module provides a historical introduction to the life of Jesus. It will involve a critical evaluation of the relevant sources for Jesus’ life, an overview of developments in the search for the historical Jesus, and a discussion of the perceived tensions between the Jesus of history and the Christ of faith.
The Hebrew Bible and Empire: Assyria, Babylon and the New World Order
Ancient Israel and Judah existed in the shadow of the Neo-Assyrian and Neo-Babylonian empires which dominated them, influenced their culture and shaped their beliefs. We'll look at how this experience of empire shaped the Biblical texts, their conceptions of god, and their visions of the longed-for New World Order, where their god and nation would rule above all others.
- historical interactions between the empires, Israel and Judah, including vassalhood, trade, rebellion, and defeats
- cultural implications of empire, including diverse religious practices, movement of peoples and awareness of nations like the kingdom of Kush
- theological implications of the God of the Hebrew Bible being a vassal to imperial deities and later becoming God of the whole world
- development of Israel and Judah’s theology, including monotheism, the imperialization of Yhwh, changing understandings of the ‘chosen people’ of Yhwh, and visions of a new world order
- anthropological research into migration and trauma, and post-colonial studies of biblical texts
This module is worth 20 credits.
Modern Jewish Thought
This module will present modern Jewish thought from a theologicophilosophical perspective as an interesting alternative to both Christian and secular models of thinking. Modern Jewish thought emerges from 'the crisis of tradition' (Gershom Scholem) which it tries to resolve in many different ways: either intrinsic to Judaism itself (e.g. Lurianic Kabbalah) or in dialogue with Western philosophy (from Spinoza to Derrida). The module will emphasize the creative impact of Jewish thinkers on the development of modernity by showing the various ways in which these thinkers renegotiate and redefine the most crucial opposition between Athens and Jerusalem, or, in their own rendering, between Yaphet and Shem. Target students: Level 3 Single and Joint Honours Theology and Religious Studies students, exchange and subsidiary students.
Intermediate Biblical Hebrew
This module builds on Level 1 introductory Hebrew language modules in developing the ability to handle the text of the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (BHS), an edition of the Hebrew Masoretic Text with its own invaluable contribution, the critical apparatus. This apparatus has a system of sigla (symbols and abbreviations) that, when learned, enable the Hebrew student to quickly compare variations of the text through the course of written history. The ability to navigate the BHS is key for examining some of the most mysterious and debated concepts in the Hebrew Bible. The basis of the module is the study and translation of individual texts (which will vary from year to year) with analysis of vocabulary, grammar, and style.
Introduction to Biblical Greek A
Introduction to the grammar, syntax and vocabulary of the Greek language, as found in the New Testament; no previous knowledge of the language is assumed.
School of Humanities Work Placement
This module embeds employability into the curriculum, giving students direct experience of a workplace, developing hard and soft skills (both subject-specific and beyond).
The module involves part-time professional placement (1 day a week for 6 weeks or equivalent) in an external organisation. It is aimed at developing hands-on work experience and employability skills in a workplace relevant to Arts/Humanities graduates.
Lectures, seminars and workshops will be organised across the School, with input by the Careers team to provide learning support/‘scaffolding’.
This module is worth 20 credits.
You must pass year two which counts approximately one third towards your final degree classification.