The Department of Religion

at Williams College

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The Religion Department at Williams offers students a range of ways to learn about both the study of religion and specific religious traditions. We specialize in courses that emphasize theoretical approaches (including philosophy, sociology, anthropology, hermeneutics, cognitive, postcolonial, and feminist theory) and critical issues (including globalization, the environment, cultural memory, violence, economics, life, God, and consumerism). In addition to these theoretical commitments, our faculty have expertise in Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, East Asian Religions, modern Jewish thought, modern continental philosophy, early Christianity, post-Enlightenment Christian tradition, and North American religions.

The major in Religion is designed both to expose students to the methods and issues involved in the study of religion and to introduce students to the beliefs, practices, and values of specific religions. Each student can fashion his or her own sequence of study within a basic pattern. Students must take REL 101 (Introduction to Religion), two seminars from among courses numbered 200 and 301-309, and REL 401 (Issues in the Study of Religion), as well as five electives. Of the five electives, students should take at least one course each in a Western and non-Western tradition. The course catalog offers further details on the major.

Many of our majors are double majors, finding interesting points of connection and challenge between the study of Religion and Math, Physics, English, American Studies, History, Political Science, Studio Art, Art History, Psychology, and Philosophy among others.

Please contact us via email or at our mailing address:
Department of Religion
Williams College
Hollander Hall
Williamstown, MA 01267