Spring 2024 | Asia, Africa, and Europe Exploration

PHIL 172 Religions of the East

Overview of Course

In order to fully appreciate the variety of the cultures that we will encounter over the course of our voyage, it is essential to understand the religious traditions that have molded them over time. This course will offer a survey of several major religions that have their historical origins in Asia—including Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Confucianism, Daoism. We will explore their systems of belief, their ritual practices, foundational texts, and artistic expressions. We will examine their geographical diversity, as well as their development over time. We will also consider both historical and contemporary modes of expression. The course will involve a mix of secondary and primary texts (in translation). Above all, the course will encourage students to draw connections between their coursework and the cultural phenomena they observe while in port.