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This is an unofficial list of courses that will be offered in Religious Studies in Fall 2022. It is strictly for the use of expanded course descriptions. For the complete official course offerings, please consult the My.UIC portal.

For a list of all courses and general course descriptions, please see the UIC Academic Catalog.


Fall 2022 Courses Heading link

RELS 101 – Introduction to World Religion
On Campus, TR 12:30-1:45
Instructor: Dr. Laura Dingeldein
Our world is filled with religions: nearly 85% of people around the globe identify as members of a religion. In this course you will learn how to analyze—from an academic perspective—these people, the religions with which they affiliate, and their activities on both local and global stages. We will examine not only the general histories and wide-ranging practices of so-called “world religions,” but also Chicago-based religious people and events from the past 150 years.
World Cultures

JST 102 / RELS 126 – Introduction to Jewish History
On Campus, TR 11:00-12:15
The Jewish People today comprise approximately one quarter of one percent of the world’s population. Despite their small numbers, their  influence on religion and culture has been remarkable. This course will survey the history of the Jews primarily from a secular/academic perspective, that is, not as the sacred history of the people of the Bible, but as a socio-political phenomenon. Since Judaism – the religion of the Jews – has been important to the self-understanding of the Jewish people, some attention will necessarily be paid to the basic elements of Jewish religious tradition, as well as its relationship to Christianity and Islam. There will also be opportunities to reflect on what we mean by “history,” as well as to consider the relevance of the Jewish experience to that of other peoples, especially those who have been diasporic minorities.
Individual and Society; Past

RELS 130 – Introduction to Islam
On Campus, TR 9:30-10:45
Both the fastest growing religion in the world and the frequent subject of misunderstanding and suspicion, Islam is a significant feature of the modern landscape. This course explores various facets of Islamic religion (beliefs, practices, history, society) from its origins in seventh-century Arabia to its status as a multicultural and global religious expression today.
World Cultures

RELS 230 – Islam and Politics
On campus and online (hybrid) – on campus R 12:30-1:45 with additional asynchronous components each week
Instructor: Dr. Joseph J. Kaminski
This class is motivated by a set of interlocking questions designed to understand the political dynamics of the modern Muslim world and will focus on a few of the more significant Islamic political movements that have transpired since the abolition of the Ottoman Caliphate in 1924. We will first explore the intellectual origins of these movements and then evaluate how these origins helped shape the modern Muslim world’s relationship to colonialism, nationalism, democracy, liberalism, development, and women and gender. We will also look at how Islamic political movements have evolved over time and what specific challenges they face today—What led to the so-called ‘Arab Spring’ in 2010 and why did it fail so spectacularly in such a short time? In order to evaluate all of the critically important concepts and questions, we will draw upon scholarship from a wide range of academic disciplines including political science, Islamic studies, sociology, anthropology, and history. This course will provide students with a robust and empirically grounded understanding of contemporary Islamic politics and political movements as well as the analytical tools necessary to explain their behavior.
World Cultures

CST / RELS 295 – Topics in Catholic Thought
On Campus, TR 3:30-4:45
Instructor: Dr. Laura Dingeldein