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OnderwijsOpleidingenMasteropleidingenTheologie & ReligiewetenschappenReligion and Pluralism, Ancient & Modern
Header image Religion and Pluralism, Ancient & Modern

Religion and Pluralism, Ancient & Modern

Programma

  • 1 jaar

    The programme consists of compulsory course units on Politics, Religion, and Pluralism (15 ECTS) and Research Methods (5 ECTS), the course units 'Texts of Terror' and 'Reception and Re-Use of Authoritative Texts' (5ECTS each), a thesis (20 ECTS), and a placement (10 ECTS).

    The first compulsory module 'Jews, Christians, and Others: Pluralism and Politics in the Greco-Roman World' explores the root belonging-categories of ethnos (notional kin-group) and polis from the classical period through the conquests of Alexander and the Romans. How diverse was this constantly changing world and what criteria permitted or constrained what we might call pluralism: tolerance or even support of difference? How did such tolerated variety manifest itself in areas connected with 'religion'?

    The module 'Muslims and non-Muslims: The Emergence of the Islamic State in Late Antiquity' explores the rise of Islam in the context of late antiquity. It examines the ways in which Islam adopted, challenged, and changed pre-existing political-religious structures and discourses. Topics to be covered include the formative moments in the shaping of the nascent 'Islamic' identity, the protection (dhimma) afforded the Peoples of the Book, the nature of asabiyya (group-feeling), the discourse surrounding 'Arabness' and tribal identity, and the tension between mu'min and muslim.

    The programme consists of compulsory course units on Politics, Religion, and Pluralism (15 ECTS) and Research Methods (5 ECTS), the course units 'Texts of Terror' and 'Reception and Re-Use of Authoritative Texts' (5ECTS each), a thesis (20 ECTS), and a placement (10 ECTS).

    The first compulsory module 'Jews, Christians, and Others: Pluralism and Politics in the Greco-Roman World' explores the root belonging-categories of ethnos (notional kin-group) and polis from the classical period through the conquests of Alexander and the Romans. How diverse was this constantly changing world and what criteria permitted or constrained what we might call pluralism: tolerance or even support of difference? How did such tolerated variety manifest itself in areas connected with 'religion'?

    The module 'Muslims and non-Muslims: The Emergence of the Islamic State in Late Antiquity' explores the rise of Islam in the context of late antiquity. It examines the ways in which Islam adopted, challenged, and changed pre-existing political-religious structures and discourses. Topics to be covered include the formative moments in the shaping of the nascent 'Islamic' identity, the protection (dhimma) afforded the Peoples of the Book, the nature of asabiyya (group-feeling), the discourse surrounding 'Arabness' and tribal identity, and the tension between mu'min and muslim.

Programma-opties

  • Master's Honours Programme (honoursprogramma)

    The Master's Honours Programme was developed especially for students who want to get more from their studies. The programme of 15 ECTS is followed in addition to your regular Master's programme.

    It is a one-year interdisciplinary programme that is designed to introduce students to various aspects of leadership.The theme of leadership is explored from various angles in the Masterclasses. Leadership skills are the focus in the Leadership Labs and Workshops. The Master's Honours Programme concludes with a Master Work – a project of your choosing that you design and implement.

Opbouw programma

VakPeriode 1Periode 2Periode 3Periode 4
Jews, Christians, and Others: Pluralism and Politics in the Greco-Roman World (10 EC)
Texts of Terror (5 EC)
Muslims and non-Muslims: The Emergence of the Islamic State in Late Antiquity (5 EC)
Reception and Re-Use of Authoritative Texts (5 EC)
Research Methods (5 EC)
Master's Thesis (20 EC)
Placement (10 EC)

It is possible to follow course units from the track Religion, Conflict and Globalization, see: http://www.rug.nl/ocasys/rug/vak/showpos?opleiding=5319. You can also follow this track within the two-year Research Master's programme in Theology and Religious Studies. See: http://www.rug.nl/masters/theology-religious-studies-research/.

It is possible to follow course units from the track Religion, Conflict and Globalization. For information about these electives, see: http://www.rug.nl/ocasys/rug/vak/showpos?opleiding=5319 You can also follow this track within the two-year Research Master's programme in Theology and Religious Studies. See: http://www.rug.nl/masters/theology-religious-studies-research/

Studeren in het buitenland

  • Studeren in het buitenland is facultatief
  • Voor gemiddeld 20 weken
  • Maximaal 30 EC

We have various exchange contracts with universities both inside and outside Europe, enabling students to follow part of their degree programme at a foreign university. Another option is to take an internship or to do part of the research work abroad. For an overview of our exchange partners, see: http://www.rug.nl/ggw/education/prosstud/exchangeprogrammes/partneruniversities

We have various exchange contracts with universities both inside and outside Europe, enabling students to follow part of their degree programme at a foreign university. Another option is to take an internship or to do part of the research work abroad. For an overview of our exchange partners, see: http://www.rug.nl/ggw/education/prosstud/exchangeprogrammes/partneruniversities

Waarom in Groningen?
  • integrated approach of religious pluralism, politics, and their many global interfaces
  • focus on historical context of modern societies
  • taught by internationally recognized experts in the field at Top 100 University
  • opportunity to pursue your own research interests
  • expertise on various religions, taught at non-denominational university
  • integrated approach of religious pluralism, politics, and their many global interfaces
  • focus on historical context of modern societies
  • taught by internationally recognized experts in the field
  • opportunity to pursue your own research interests
  • expertise on various religions, taught at non-denominational university

Master's students are expected to show a large degree of independence. If necessary you can make use of various forms of study supervision and study support. For example, you can contact a mentor or your study advisor. While writing your thesis, you will receive personal supervision from one of the lecturers.

Immediately after arrival, students who gained their Bachelor's degree at a different faculty or university as well as international students will be allocated a mentor who will help them get to know the Faculty. You can also go to the study advisor if you have doubts about your abilities or for whatever reason run the risk of study delay. You will receive intensive supervision while writing your thesis. The Master's programme includes a thesis seminar, where attention is paid to how to tackle writing a Master's thesis, and where the progress of the process is monitored closely. You will also receive structural supervision from the lecturer who is the specialist in the field of your thesis.

Master's students are expected to show a large degree of independence. If necessary you can make use of various forms of study supervision and study support. For example, you can contact a mentor or your study advisor. While writing your thesis, you will receive personal supervision from one of the lecturers.

Immediately after arrival, students who gained their Bachelor's degree at a different faculty or university as well as international students will be allocated a mentor who will help them get to know the Faculty. You can also go to the study advisor if you have doubts about your abilities or for whatever reason run the risk of study delay. You will receive intensive supervision while writing your thesis. The Master's programme includes a thesis seminar, where attention is paid to how to tackle writing a Master's thesis, and where the progress of the process is monitored closely. You will also receive structural supervision from the lecturer who is the specialist in the field of your thesis.

  • Testimonial van Professor Steve Mason

    Exploring the possibilities of tolerance

    Religious pluralism has never been a more timely theme. Religious interactions, especially among Christians, Jews, and Muslims have taken a central place in western societies. Pluralism is not merely plurality or variety, which is inevitable, but implies some sort of rationale or intention to accommodate plurality and toleration, if not actual acceptance of the Other. These issues can be explored in many ways, for example from political and social-scientific perspectives.

    The unique feature of this track is that it fuses these contemporary concerns with a substantial investigation of the ancient origins of the three traditions, their early interactions, and their mechanisms or rationales for toleration of otherness. An important dimension is the study of ancient social-political discourse, and the tolerance (or not) of Jews and Christians in the Graeco-Roman world. 

    I will lead the core seminar on Politics, Religion, and Pluralism from Alexander the Great to Theodosius II. This is an in-depth investigation of ancient social-political categories (e.g., ethnos, ancestral traditions, laws and customs, polis, sacrificial cults, philosophical schools, and voluntary associations), in which we consider the possibilities of tolerance, protectiveness, fear of others, expulsion of foreigners, and attraction to foreign ways. The course examines the general scene and also the place of Jewish-Judaean minority populations and Christian associations in that framework. You will have the opportunity to reflect in a sustained way on factors influencing community stances toward others, from a wide variety of angles. The alienness of the ancient world along with its importance for our traditions make it an ideal canvas for exploring the possibilities of human existence. Students who complete this programme will have a solid grounding in ancient religious pluralism as a foundation and reference point for addressing related modern phenomena.

     Central questions include these. What limits did the Hellenistic kingdoms and Roman Empire impose on diversity? What sorts of considerations led people to undertake the rigours of migration and resettlement in the ancient Mediterranean? What levels and kinds of cross-cultural interaction (in business, trade, cultural events) occurred in normal times? What happened practically in times of severe crisis? Who was in charge? What was the relationship between political rhetoric and lived reality concerning minority communities?

    I am a historian of the eastern Mediterranean under Hellenistic and Roman rule. My latest books are about inter-ethnic conflict (2016) and the categories of ancient social-political discourse or the mapping of ancient peoples (2017).

    Sluiten
    – Professor Steve Mason
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