The Department of Religious Studies examines religious beliefs, institutions and practices using approaches from the humanities, arts, social sciences and sciences. The academic study of religion, combined with appropriate courses in other fields, provides an excellent background for any professional career—including law, engineering, medicine and health care professions, journalism, social work and others—and for graduate studies in a number of fields.

A major in religious studies provides a well-rounded liberal arts education or can be combined conveniently with a second major. Minors or sequences in religious studies complement and broaden any field chosen as a major.

American Academy of Religion Annual Meeting, November 19-22, 2022 in Denver, CO

Faculty members in the Department of Religious Studies will be presenting and participating in panel discussions on a wide range of interdisciplinary topics at the 2022 American Academy of Religion annual meeting. Here is a sampling of topics:

Dr. Brian Clites is the organizer and will preside over a panel on “Clergy Sexual Abuse: Catastrophe, Trauma, and Trust.”

Dr. Timothy Beal will preside over the Publications Committee Reception: Networking with AAR Publication Editors

Dr. Joy R. Bostic will be the respondent for the “Relational Cosmologies and Mystical Practices for Ecological Repair”; and chairing the “Queerness and the Mystical Body”.

Dr. Deepak Sarma will be a panelist on two sessions: Bioethics and Religion: Vaccine Religious Exemptions and Pandemic Ethics; and Drugs & Religion roundtable.

Dr. Jonathan Tan will be on the Society of Biblical Literature panel discussion Revelation panel Vernacular: A Discussion with Jean-Pierre Ruiz about His Work and Future of the Study of Revelation and Scriptures


Dr. Brian Clites, Curran Center Award Winner, Explores Healing Power of Voice

There is healing power in using your voice.

That was one of the lessons of “A Theology of Voice: VOCAL and the Catholic Clergy Abuse Survivor Movement,” an article by Brian Clites, Ph.D., chosen by Fordham’s Curran Center for American Catholic Studies in May as the winner of its third annual New Scholars essay contest.

The article traces the origins of VOCAL (Victims of Clergy Abuse Linkup), which was among the first and most prominent advocacy organizations for American survivors of childhood clergy sexual abuse. It was a predecessor of the currently active SNAP, (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests), and was notable, Clites said, because its leaders explicitly recognized the spiritual dimensions of the abuse they suffered, which they called “soul murder.”

Celebrity, Politics, Power: The Fan Future of the Electorate

Dr. Kathryn Lofton is a 2023 Hildegarde and Elbert Baker Visiting Scholar in the Humanities. Dr. Lofton will be giving a talk on Wednesday, October 19 at 4:30 PM in Clark Hall Room 206.

Register HERE.


Master of Arts in Religious Studies applications

Applications for the Master of Arts Program in Religious Studies are now being accepted.