F&ES 861a

American Indian Religions and Ecology 

2013-2014
Credits: 3 Fall 2013: Tu,Th, 2:30-3:45, ISPS Rm A002-Tuesday; Rm A001-Thursday
 
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This course focuses on the North American continent from the standpoint of religion and ecology. A cultural-historical method is also used in conjunction with comparative-thematic and worldview approaches. These approaches emphasize embodied knowledge as a way of understanding native continuities in relationship with bioregions over time. Comparisons are also drawn between Native American traditions, and the concept of “lifeway” is developed as central to the course. In highlighting indigenous ways of knowing, the course focuses on conceptual metaphors of sharing, holism, reciprocity, and personhood. These modes of indigenous metaphoric thought are examined in terms of diverse rituals and oral statements describing the natural world.