The goal of Catholic Studies 200 is to introduce students to the range of methodologies and topics that the study of Catholicism includes. It will equip students with the tools they will need to understand Catholic history, culture, and theological disciplines. The main areas of study will be scripture, history of Christianity, systematic theology, art and literature, and contemporary topics and issues. The methodologies will be biblical, historical, philosophical, and comparative.
Rome, Assisi, and Florence, in their archaeological sites (Etruscan, Roman, early Christian) as well as churches and museums, contain a record of Classical & Christian architecture and art forms from the earliest period to the Renaissance. Students will be able to study these works and come to appreciate not just the art and architecture themselves but also the role they played in the cultural life of the first century. Those working towards a Catholic Studies minor will also come to appreciate the subsequent architectural and artistic development of Christianity.
Scientific breakthroughs have indelibly changed our lives, yet one seldom reflects on what these changes do to us as human beings. This course will survey different lines of anthropological perspectives, including that of the Catholic Church. With these in mind, the implications of contemporary scientific and technological issues will be discussed. These include topics such as reproductive technologies, stem cell research, the human genome project, human enhancement technologies, ecology and internet-related matters.
Founded in 1540, the Society of Jesus has aroused admiration and respect, but also fear and suspicion, throughout its eventful history. As explorers and missionaries, educators and scientists, confessors and reformers, Jesuits have left an indelible mark on the history of the Catholic church as well as on the modern age itself. This course explores the origin, expansion, suppression and return of the Jesuits, examining their impact on political, religious, sociocultural and intellectual life worldwide. We will assess the rapid growth of the order, from its beginnings in Reformation Europe to its contact with cultures in Asia, the Americas and Africa. Jesuit contributions to science, the arts, politics and social reform will also be considered.