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2021-2022 Catalog

REL 310 Sacrifice: Ritual and Violence

What do the Eucharist, the ritual slaughter of oxen, and military service have in common? They all share sacrificial elements; the giving up of something, often the life of some being (broadly understood), in order to constitute the sacredness or boundary of a community. This course examines the role of sacrifice in religion, ritual, gender relations and even secular social formations such as nationalism. The course thus explores both theories of sacrifice and the significance of sacrifice in different social and historical contexts. [GM1, GM2, H, SS, W]