Theology and Religious Studies Courses

Students entering the University of San Diego and/or declaring a major during 2015-2016, should follow information contained in the printed course catalog (also known as the "catalog of record") published on October 1, 2015. Access the catalog of record at http://catalogs.sandiego.edu.

THRS 110, THRS 112, THRS 114, THRS 116, THRS 119, THRS 202, THRS 203, THRS 301, THRS 312, THRS 313, THRS 314, THRS 315, THRS 316, THRS 317, THRS 318, THRS 320, THRS 321, THRS 330, THRS 331, THRS 334, THRS 335, THRS 336, THRS 341, THRS 342, THRS 343, THRS 353, THRS 354, THRS 355, THRS 356, THRS 357, THRS 358, THRS 360, THRS 361, THRS 362, THRS 363, THRS 364, THRS 366, THRS 367, THRS 368, THRS 369, THRS 370, THRS 371, THRS 381, THRS 382, THRS 383, THRS 385, THRS 386, THRS 388, THRS 390, THRS 394, THRS 450W, THRS 451W, THRS 499

THRS 110 | EXPLORING RELIGIOUS MEANING

Units: 3

A thematic and topical introduction to the study of religion. Drawing material from at least four religious traditions, including Christianity, this course considers a range of possible themes and topics such as symbol, ritual, mysticism, myth, material culture, gender, ethics, ecology, death and the afterlife, and contemplative practice.

THRS 112 | INTRODUCTION TO WORLD RELIGIONS

Units: 3-4

A survey of the major religious traditions of the world, focusing on an understanding of the religious world views and practices that shape cultures across the globe. Selected readings from these traditions, which will include Christianity, the religions of India and East Asia, Judaism, Islam, and the religions of indigenous oral cultures.

THRS 114 | INTRODUCTION TO CATHOLIC THEOLOGY

Units: 3

This course is an introductory survey designed to prepare students for upper division courses in Christian theology. Topics may include the scriptures, history of the Church and/or theology, the nature of theological discourse, introduction to theological terms and definitions, and examination of select topics or issues in theology. Emphasis will be placed on the constitutive dimensions and characteristics of the Roman Catholic tradition.

THRS 116 | INTRODUCTION TO BIBLICAL STUDIES

Units: 3

A study of the Bible: its formation, historical character, primary themes, and interpretation.

THRS 119 | CHRISTIANITY AND ITS PRACTICE

Units: 3

An introduction to Christian belief and practice through reflection on classic and contemporary expressions of the Christian life.

THRS 202 | SPECIAL TOPICS IN THEOLOGY

Units: 3-4 Repeatability: Yes (Can be repeated for Credit)

An examination of selected issues or themes in religion, and/or theological ethics, from one or more Christian perspectives, to be chosen by the instructor. Topics will vary semester by semester. A list of current special topic offerings is available on the department website.

THRS 203 | SPECIAL TOPICS IN RELIGIOUS STUDIES

Units: 3-4 Repeatability: Yes (Can be repeated for Credit)

An examination of selected issues or themes in religion to be chosen by the instructor. Topics will have a comparative focus. Topics will vary semester by semester. A list of current special topic offerings is available on the department website.

THRS 301 | RELIGION CAFÉ: MAJORS AND MINORS SEMINAR

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202 or THRS 203

Through the study of exemplary texts and presentations from invited Theology and Religious Studies faculty members, this seminar will introduce students to the various methodologies in the academic study of religion, as well as to the research interests of current faculty members in the department. This course will also address basic research methodologies, the use of the library and the internet, and the construction of a research paper. This seminar is required of all majors and is open to minors. The course should be taken as soon as possible following the declaration of the major or minor.

THRS 312 | THE HINDU TRADITION

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

A historical and systematic study of Indian religion from the Vedic revelation to modern theologians, with special emphasis on points of contact between Hindu and Christian thought.

THRS 313 | JEWISH FAITH AND PRACTICE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 116 or THRS 203

An examination of Jewish beliefs and practices, their historical and biblical foundations, and their theological and cultural expressions.

THRS 314 | BUDDHIST THOUGHT AND CULTURE

Units: 3-4

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

An introduction to the academic study of Buddhism. The course systematically explores the historical development, philosophical premises, religious practices, social institutions, and cultural expressions of the world’s Buddhist traditions, with special emphasis on points of contact between Buddhist and Christian thought.

THRS 315 | ISLAMIC FAITH AND PRACTICE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

This course is designed to provide students with a basic introduction to Islam. The monotheistic belief system and the concept of Qur'anic law will be the focus of the early part of the course. Brief overview of its early history will be followed by discussions on questions of interpretation, reform, and renewal.

THRS 316 | THE DAOIST TRADITION

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

An introduction to the Daoist (Taoist) tradition as both an indigenous Chinese religion and global cultural and religious phenomenon. This course provides a systematic overview of Daoist history and explores important and representative Daoist concerns such as cosmology, dietetics, ethics, meditation, ritual, and scripture study.

THRS 317 | RELIGIONS OF CHINA

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

An introduction to Chinese religions with specific emphasis placed on the indigenous Chinese religions of Confucianism and Daoism (Taoism) as well as on Chinese forms of Buddhism. This course explores not only Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism as Chinese cultural traditions, but also the transformation of those traditions in contemporary China and in contemporary America.

THRS 318 | ISLAM, WOMEN AND LITERATURE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

The course will set in perspective the diversity of cultural manifestations of Islam in its regard for women. It will require a selective exploration of literary works. The writings reflect debates regarding the ever-changing role of Muslim women within various religious, social, geographic, economic and political contexts, primarily in the last 50 years, a period of significant historical change in the Muslim world.

THRS 320 | NATIVE AMERICAN RELIGIOUS TRADITIONS

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203

A historical and systematic investigation into the spiritual contribution of Native Americans, their ethos, and their meaning for Christianity and the future of humanity.

THRS 321 | AFRO-LATIN RELIGIONS

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 110 or THRS 112 or THRS 203 or THRS 358

This course studies the three main religions of African origins in Latin America and the United States. Lukumí/Candomblé, Vodoun, and Umbanda are approached and interpreted from diverse perspectives: historical, cultural, theological, etc. Their formation and development are contextualized in the Latin American experience of slavery. Their contemporary significance is discussed.

THRS 330 | FOUNDATIONS OF CHRISTIAN ETHICS

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of the life of Christian discipleship, centered on the development of moral character, on the role of communities in the living of Christian life, and on norms for the personal and social actions of Christians.

THRS 331 | SEXUAL ETHICS IN THE CATHOLIC TRADITION

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

An examination of human sexuality from the perspective of the Roman Catholic tradition. After an introduction to Catholic ethical method, the course examines traditional and contemporary understandings of sexuality, gender, sexual orientation, love, and justice. This provides a foundation for consideration of moral norms regarding such issues as marriage, non- marital sex, LGBTQ sexuality, masturbation, pornography, birth control, prostitution, and prevention of sexually transmitted infections including HIV/AIDS.

THRS 334 | CHRISTIAN SOCIAL ETHICS

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of the Christian community’s relation to civil society and of socioethical problems in light of Christian tradition.

THRS 335 | CATHOLIC SOCIAL THOUGHT

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of modern Catholic social teaching with a focus on major official Catholic documents since the late nineteenth century that have dealt with moral issues of contemporary social problems: from the economic aftermath of the Industrial Revolution to globalization, international relations, environmental change, and contemporary warfare.

THRS 336 | RELIGOUS PEACEBUILDING AND RECONCILIATION

Units: 3

An exploration of the theory and practice of religious peacebuilding and a survey of constructive resources for conflict transformation, violence prevention, and reconciliation processes in divided societies. Prereq: Any lower division THRS course or consent of instructor.

THRS 341 | CHRISTIAN WORSHIP

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

An introduction to the study of Christian liturgy through an examination of the history of liturgical practice, of myth and symbol as dimensions of sacramentality, and of theological and cultural principles of celebration.

THRS 342 | CHRISTIAN SACRAMENTAL PRACTICE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of the practice, history, and theology of Christian initiation, eucharist, penance, anointing of the sick, holy orders, and matrimony.

THRS 343 | CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A theological study of Christian marriage with consideration of the historical development and current pastoral understanding of this sacrament.

THRS 353 | EARLY CHRISTIANITY

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of the theology and religious practices of the first five centuries of Christianity.

THRS 354 | THE MEDIEVAL CHURCH

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of the theology and religious practices of Western Christianity from the sixth through the 15th centuries.

THRS 355 | THE REFORMATION ERA

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A study of the theologies and religious traditions leading to, and expressed in, diverse ecclesial communities in Christianity during the 16th and 17th centuries.

THRS 356 | CATHOLICISM IN THE UNITED STATES

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

The history of the Catholic Church in the United States of America and theological reflection upon its unique development and characteristics.

THRS 357 | SAINTS AND SINNERS IN U.S. PROTESTANTISM

Units: 3

The histories and theologies of Protestantism in the United States from the perspective of individuals and movements that have had significant intellectual and cultural influence, for example on issues of gender, politics, or science. This course is usually taught through role-playing simulation games. Prereq: Any lower division THRS course or consent of instructor.

THRS 358 | LATINO/A CATHOLICISM

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A culturally contextualized study of the beliefs and practices of Latino/a Catholics in the U.S., with particular emphasis on popular Catholicism.

THRS 360 | JESUS IN CHRISTIAN TRADITION

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A critical investigation of the person and ministry of Jesus in light of Scripture and the Christian tradition.

THRS 361 | CHRISTIAN UNDERSTANDING OF THE HUMAN PERSON

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

A theological exploration of the meaning and dignity of human persons in terms of their relationships to God and to creation.

THRS 362 | CHRISTIAN UNDERSTANDINGS OF SALVATION

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

An examination of Christian understandings of salvation from biblical, historical, and contemporary perspectives.

THRS 363 | BELIEF AND UNBELIEF

Units: 3

An investigation in the context of modern atheism and secular humanism into the validity of the claim of religion to speak truthfully of God and to describe the adequate response of human beings to the divine being.

THRS 364 | THEOLOGY OF THE CHURCH

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

An investigation of the origin, nature, and function of the Church, primarily from the Catholic perspective.

THRS 366 | THE PROBLEM OF GOD

Units: 3

The questions “What is God?,” “Does God exist?” and “What does it mean to believe in God?” are investigated against the background of classical theism and modern thought.

THRS 367 | FEMINIST THEOLOGY

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 202

An exploration of contemporary feminist theologies from the Christian perspective to gain knowledge of their contributions and challenges to the whole of the Christian tradition. Included is a survey of historical emergence, methods and approaches, major theological themes, tasks, and spirituality.

THRS 368 | LATINO/A THEOLOGIES

Units: 3 Repeatability: No

Prerequisites: THRS 114 or THRS 116 or THRS 119 or THRS 358

An analysis of the contexts, major themes, authors, and texts of U.S. Latino/a and/or Latin American theologies. Liberation and cultural theologies will be emphasized.

THRS 369 | LIBERATION THEOLOGY

Units: 3

A study of the origin, characteristics, method, central themes, and current expressions of liberation theology. Special emphasis on the understanding of revelation, God, Jesus Christ, the Church, the human being, Christian ethics, social justice, and Christian spirituality. Prereq: Any lower division THRS course or consent of instructor.

THRS 370 | GENDER AND RELIGION IN THE UNITED STATES

Units: 3 Repeatability: No

An examination of religion’s role in shaping womanhood and manhood, and the roles men and women have played in shaping religious communities in the U.S.

THRS 371 | CULTS AND SECTS IN THE UNITED STATES

Units: 3

An examination of new religious movements commonly called cults and sects in the U.S. Prereq: Any lower division THRS course, or consent of instructor.

THRS 381 | THE FIVE BOOKS OF MOSES

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 116

A study of the first five books of the Bible (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy), the history of their composition, and their theological contributions to Judaism and Christianity.

THRS 382 | THE PROPHETIC TRADITION OF ISRAEL

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 116

A study of Old Testament prophets in their historical, social, and political backgrounds. Attention is given to the contribution of the prophets to Jewish-Christian theologies and their significance for the contemporary world.

THRS 383 | GOSPELS OF MATTHEW, MARK & LUKE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 116

A study of the sayings and deeds of Jesus as handed down by the early Christians and recorded in the first two Gospels.

THRS 385 | PAUL, THE MAN & HIS MESSAGE

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 116

A study of the Pauline writings and theological thought. Major themes are reviewed with respect to their applications to present-day Christian life.

THRS 386 | JOHANNINE THEOLOGY

Units: 3

Prerequisites: THRS 116

A study of the Johannine writings, particularly the Gospel. Some of the major themes examined are Christology, Trinitarian doctrine, and eschatology.

THRS 388 | THE WORLD OF THE BIBLE

Units: 3

A survey of historical, political, social, cultural, and religious conditions of selected periods in biblical history.

THRS 390 | HOLOCAUST: DEATH OR GOD OR DEATH OF HUMANITY?

Units: 3

A study of the Holocaust focused on the moral and religious dilemmas it raises for Jews and Christians.

THRS 394 | TOPICS IN THEOLOGY AND RELIGIOUS STUDIES

Units: 3-4 Repeatability: Yes (Can be repeated for Credit)

A study of selected major figures or problems or movements or periods in either Christianity and/or other religions. Specification will be made by the instructor. Prereq: If any variies with instructor and topic.

THRS 450W | THEMES IN THEOLOGICAL STUDIES

Units: 3 Repeatability: Yes (Can be repeated for Credit)

Prerequisites: THRS 301

A study of selected issues, problems, or themes of relevance across the various specialties and subfields in theological studies. The selected issue or theme will be explored both deeply and broadly. Specification will be made by the instructor. The course may be repeated for credit with different course content. This course meets the requirements for a USD W course. Students will produce and orally present substantial term papers. Prereq: THRS 301; declared major or minor in THRS.

THRS 451W | THEMES IN RELIGIOUS STUDIES

Units: 3 Repeatability: Yes (Can be repeated for Credit)

Prerequisites: THRS 301

A study of selected issues, problems, or themes of relevance across the various specialties and subfields in religious studies. The selected issue or theme will be explored both deeply and broadly. Specification will be made by the instructor. The course may be repeated for credit with different course content. This course meets the requirements for a USD W course. Students will produce and orally present substantial term papers. Prereq: THRS 301; declared major or minor in THRS.

THRS 499 | DIRECTED INDIVIDUAL STUDY

Units: 1-3 Repeatability: Yes (Can be repeated for Credit)

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor and approval of the department chair and the dean.

Department of Theology and Religious Studies
College of Arts and Sciences

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