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This is a provisional schedule for the July 2022 Religious Worlds institute.  Some of the readings, site visits, and other details may change, but this schedule will give you a sense of content, workload, and pacing of the institute.

Please note: Readings in green are optional, so the workload is not as large as it may seem at first glance Optional readings will enrich your understanding of the issues we discuss, but will not be a focus of class discussions.  Optional background readings on specific faith traditions are highly recommended if you are not already familiar with the tradition in question.

 

Introduction to the Institute

Monday, July 11

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Welcome, Orientation, and Introductions, Henry Goldschmidt

Reading:

Christopher Cotter and David Robertson, “The World Religions Paradigm in Contemporary Religious Studies,” in After World Religions, eds. Cotter and Robertson (Routledge, 2016), pp 1-20.

Henry Goldschmidt, “From World Religions to Lived Religion: Towards a Pedagogy of Civic Engagement in Secondary School Religious Studies Curricula,” in Civility, Religious Pluralism, and Education, eds. Vincent Biondo & Andrew Fiala (Routledge, 2014), pp 177-192.

10:30      Break

10:45      Religious Liberty in American History and Ideals, Charles Haynes

Reading:

John Winthrop,  A Model of Christian Charity, selection (1630)

Roger Williams,  The Bloudy Tenent of Persecution for Cause of Conscience, summary (1644)

The Flushing Remon­strance (1657)

Moses Seixas,  Letter to President George Washington (1790)

George Washington,  Letter to the Jews of Newport (1790)

12:15      Lunch

1:30        Teaching About Religion in Public and Private Schools, Charles Haynes

Reading:

U.S. Supreme Court,  Abington v. Schempp  (1963)

Warren Nord and Charles Haynes, Taking Religion Seriously Across the Curriculum (ASCD and First Amendment Center, 1998), Intro, Chaps 1, 2, and 8.  (You may also want to read any other chapters that are relevant to your teaching.  It’s an extremely helpful book even you don’t accept its broad arguments about religion, secularism, and public education.)

3:00        Small Group Discussions of Constitutional Issues in Teaching about Religion, with closing reflections facilitated by Charles Haynes

4:30        Done with Seminars, but . . .

5:00        Welcome to New York – Wine and Cheese Reception, Sponsored by ICNY and UTS

 

Tuesday, July 12

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        The Critical, Comparative Analysis of Religion, Henry Goldschmidt

Reading:

William Paden,  Religious Worlds: The Comparative Study of Religion (Beacon Press, 1988), Preface, Intro., Chapters 1, 2, and 3.  (You may also want to read at least one out of chapters 4 to 7 in Paden, which illustrate his comparative method to the study of religion.  Chapter 6 on “Gods” is fascinating, but take your pick.)

10:30      Small Group Discussions:  Why Teach about Religion?  What do my Students Gain?

11:15      Break

11:30      The Study of Everyday Religious Life, Henry Goldschmidt

Reading:

Robert Orsi, “Everyday Miracles: The Study of Lived Relig­ion,” in Lived Religion in America: Toward a History of Practice, ed. David Hall (Princeton U. Press, 1997), pp. 3-21.

Robert Orsi, “Is the Study of Lived Religion Irrelevant to the World We Live In?” in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, vol. 42 (2003), pp. 169-174.

1:00        Lunch

2:00        Bus leaves Union Theological Seminary for Site Visit to “Bronx Lourdes” grotto, led by Henry Goldschmidt

4:30-ish           Return to UTS and Done for the Day

 

Wednesday, July 13

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Debrief / Discussion of Site Visit to “Bronx Lourdes” Grotto, Henry Goldschmidt

10:00      Break

10:15      Classroom Strategies for Teaching about Religion – Raising the Issues, Henry Goldschmidt

Readings:

First Amendment Center, Teacher’s Guide to Religion in the Public Schools  (2001)

American Academy of Religion, Guidelines for Teaching about Religion in K-12 Public Schools in the United States  (2010)

10:30      Classroom Strategies Continued – Creating Inclusive Learning Communities for the Study of Religion, Eva Abbamonte, Jody Madell, Jacqueline Richard, and Kathy Wildman Zinger

11:30      Lunch

12:30      Classroom Strategies Continued – Workshops with Our Curriculum Mentors

45 minutes each, in groups of 12-13 (half of the institute) rotating between workshops, with a break from 2:00 – 2:15

      • Dialogue Tools for Civil Discourse, Jody Madell and Jacqueline Richard
      • Student-Centered Learning in the Study of Religion, Jody Madell and Jacqueline Richard
      • Making Tough Choices in Curricular Planning, Eva Abbamonte and Kathy Wildman Zinger
      • Engaging with Parents and Local Communities, Eva Abbamonte and Kathy Wildman Zinger

3:45        Introductory Discussion of Curriculum Development Projects, Henry Goldschmidt

4:00        Done for the Day

 

World Religions and Religious Worlds

Thursday, July 14

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to Christianity and Christian Communities, Morrey Davis

Optional:     

Linda Woodhead,  Christianity: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2003), chaps 1 and 2.

Catherine Albanese, “Understanding Christian Diversity in America,” in American Christianities: A History of Dominance and Diversity, eds. Catherine Brekus and W. Clark Gilpin (University of North Carolina Press, 2011), pp. 29-58.

10:30      Break

10:45      Panel Discussion with New York Christian Clergy and Lay Leaders, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

12:15      Lunch

1:30        Introduction to Burke Library, and to Web-Based Resources for the Study of Religion, with Burke Staff and Henry Goldschmidt

2:30        Done for the Day, or Appointments with Burke Research Librarians, and . . .

8:00        Optional site visit to Zhikr service at Dergah al-Farah (progressive Sufi mosque) Meet at the dergah, 245 West Broadway.

 

Friday, July 15

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to Islam and Muslim Communities, Ali Asani

Reading:

Ali Asani, “Enhancing Religious Literacy in a Liberal Arts Education Through the Study of Islam and Muslim Societies,” in The Harvard Sampler, eds. Shephard, Kosslyn, and Hammonds (Harvard UP, 2011), pp 1-31.

Optional:     

Carl Ernst, Following Muhammad: Rethinking Islam in the Contemporary  World (U. of North Carolina Press, 2004), Chaps 2, 3, and 4

Edward Curtis, “Peril and Possibility: Muslim Life in the United States” in Islam in World Cultures: Comparative Perspectives, ed. R. M. Feener (ABC-CLIO, 2004), pp. 283-307.

10:30      Break

10:45      Panel Discussion with New York Muslim Clergy and Lay Leaders, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

12:15      Quick lunch together at Union  (provided by the institute)

12:45      Cabs leave Union Theological Seminary for site visit to Jumma service at the Mosque of Islamic Brotherhood, led by Henry Goldschmidt

3:30-ish           Done for the Day, at the Mosque of Islamic Brotherhood

  

Saturday, July 16

No institute activities.  Relax and enjoy the city!

  

Sunday, July 17

10:30      Site visit to Sunday morning service at Convent Avenue Baptist Church, led by Henry Goldschmidt.

Meet at the church, 420 West 145th Street @ Convent Avenue.

 

Monday, July 18

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Debrief / Discussion of Site Visits to the Mosque of Islamic Brotherhood and Convent Avenue Baptist Church, Henry Goldschmidt

Optional:     

Sarah Sayeed, Aisha al-Adawiya, and Ihsan Bagby, Women and the American Mosque.  Islamic Society of North America, 2013.

10:00      Break

10:15      Exploring Religious Worlds (and specifically Harlem churches) Through Literature, Josef Sorett

Reading:

James Baldwin, Go Tell it on the Mountain (Dial Press, 2000 [1953])

Optional:     

Henry Goldschmidt, “Teaching Lived Religion through Literature: Classroom Strategies for Community-Based Learning,” in Teaching About  Religion in the Social Studies Classroom, ed. Charles Haynes (National Council for the Social Studies, 2019), pp. 53-60.

11:45      Small Group Discussions of Teaching Religion with Literature: What Texts Have You Used (or Would You Use) and Why?

12:45      Lunch

2:00        Curriculum Development Group Meetings with Mentors

4:00        Done for the Day – or Research Time for Curriculum Development Projects

5:00        Special Late Hours at Burke Library, from 5:00 to 7:00 pm – Research librarians available to discuss curriculum development projects

 

Tuesday, July 19

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to Hinduism and Hindu Communities, Jack Hawley

Optional:     

Diana Eck, Darsan: Seeing the Divine Image in Hinduism (Columbia U. Press, 1985), Chap. 1 and Afterward

Sitansu Chakravarti, Hinduism: A Way of Life (Motilal Banarsidass, 1991), 23-43

Prema Kurien, A Place at the Multicultural Table: The Development of an American Hinduism (Rutgers U. Press, 2007), Chapter 3

John Stratton Hawley, “Global Hinduism in Gotham,” in Asian American Religions: Borders and Boundaries, eds. Tony Carnes and Fenggang Yang (New York U. Press, 2004), pp. 112-137

10:30      Break

10:45      Panel Discussion with New York Hindu Clergy and Lay Leaders, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

12:15      Bus leaves Union Theological Seminary for Site Visit to the Hindu Temple Society of North America, led by Henry Goldschmidt.

Lunch together at the temple canteen (provided by the institute).

4:30-ish           Return to UTS and Done for the Day

 

Wednesday, July 20

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to Buddhism and Buddhist Communities, Laura Harrington

Reading:

Robert Buswell & Donald Lopez, “10 Misperceptions about Buddhism”  A series of blog posts published online in Tricycle: The Buddhist Review (2014)

Optional:     

Scott Mitchell, Buddhism in America: Global Religion, Local Context (Bloomsbury Academic, 2016), Intro, chaps. 1, 4, 5, and 6.

10:30      Break

10:45      Panel Discussion with New York Buddhist Clergy and Lay Leaders, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

12:15      Lunch

1:30        Subway from Union Theological Seminary for Site Visit to Chogyesa Zen Temple of New York, led by Henry Goldschmidt

3:30-ish           Done for the Day, at Chogyesa Temple

 

Thursday, July 21

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Debrief / Discussion of Site Visits to the Hindu Temple Society of North America and Chogyesa Zen Temple of New York, Henry Goldschmidt

10:00      Break

10:15      Exploring the Ties and Tensions among Religious Worlds, with the Pluralism Project’s Case Study Method, Alexis Salomone

Reading:

Ellie Pierce, “What is at Stake? Exploring the Problems of Pluralism” in The Journal of Inter-Religious Studies, # 15 (August 2015).

The Pluralism Project, Harvard University, “A Call to Prayer,” A and B Cases

Optional:     

John Boehrer and Marty Linsky, “Teaching with Cases: Learning to Question,” in New Directions for Teaching and Learning, no. 42, pp. 41-57 (Summer 1990).

1:00        Lunch

2:00        Walking Tour Exploring Muslim History in Harlem, led by Katherine Merriman

4:00        Discussion of Neighborhood Walking Tours and K-12 Pedagogy, led by Katherine Merriman and Henry Goldschmidt

Optional:     

Gillian Judson, A Walking Curriculum: Evoking Wonder and Developing Sense of Place (Centre for Imagination in Research, Culture, and Education, 2018), chaps 1 and 6.

5:00        Done for the Day

  

Friday, July 22

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to Judaism and Jewish Communities, Hasia Diner

Optional:     

Hasia Diner, A New Promised Land: A History of Jews in America (Oxford University Press, 2003).  (Chapters 2, 3, and 4, on the major waves of American Jewish immigration and settlement, are particularly recommended if you have time.)

John Leach (ed.), A Teacher’s Guide to Religion in American Life (Oxford University Press, 2003).  (Diner’s A New Promised Land is one of a series of 25 books on American religious history for young adult readers, pub­lished by Oxford University Press.  These are great resources for teachers, so we have included a copy of the teacher’s guide to the series as a whole.)

10:30      Break

10:45      Panel Discussion with New York Jewish Clergy and Lay Leaders, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

12:15      Afternoon off – or Research Time for Curriculum Development Projects

6:30        Site Visit to Kabbalat Shabbat service at Congregation B’nai Jeshurun, 257 West 88th Street

Optional:     

Ayala Fader, Mark Kligman, Rolando Matalon, Marcelo Bronstein, and Felicia Sol,  Spirituality at B’nai Jeshurun: Reflections of Two Scholars and Three Rabbis.  S3K Synagogue Studies Institute, 2009.

 

Saturday, July 23

 No institute activities.  Relax and enjoy the city!

 

Sunday, July 24

No required institute activities.  Relax and enjoy the city!  And/or:

Optional institute barbecue at Henry’s house – more details closer to the date.

 

Monday, July 25

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to African Diaspora Religious Traditions and Communities, Elizabeth McAlister

Optional:     

Joseph Murphy, Working the Spirit: Ceremonies of the African Diaspora (Beacon Press, 1995), chapters 1, 2, 4, and 7

Karen McCarthy Brown, “Staying Grounded in a High-Rise Building: Ecological Dissonance and Ritual Accommodation in Haitian Vodou.”  In Gods of the City: Religion and the American Urban Landscape, ed. Robert Orsi (Indiana U. Press, 1999), pp. 79-102.

10:30      Break

10:45      Panel Discussion with African Diaspora Clergy and Lay Leaders, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

12:15      Lunch

1:30        Subway from Union Theological Seminary to Vodou Temple and Cultural Center in Brownsville, Brooklyn

Site Visit, Haitian Dinner, and (maybe) Vodou Ceremony, led by Henry Goldschmidt and above all temple members

6:00        Done for the Day – Maybe.

 

Sacred Gotham:
Locating “Religion” in the Life of the City

Tuesday, July 26

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Introduction to Sacred Gotham: Problematizing the Concepts of “Religion,” “Sacred,” and “Secular,” Henry Goldschmidt

Reading:

Brent Nongbri, Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept (Yale University Press, 2013), Intro. and Chap. 1

David Chidester, Authentic Fakes: Religion and American Popular Culture (University of California Press, 2005), Chap. 2

9:30        Break, and walk to Saint John’s

10:00      Field Research:  Locating “Religion” at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine. Meet at the Cathedral, on Amsterdam Avenue and 112th Street.

12:00      Lunch

1:00        Reflecting on “Religion” at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt

2:15        Break

2:30        Curriculum Development Group Meetings with Mentors

4:30        Done for the Day – or Research/Writing Time for CD Projects

5:00        Special Late Hours at Burke Library, from 5:00 to 7:00 pm – Research librarians available to discuss curriculum development projects

 

Wednesday, July 27

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Field Research:  Locating “Religion” on the Streets of the Upper West Side

3:00        Return to UTS.  Prepare Presentations on the Meanings of “Religion” in your Fieldwork Area

4:00        Done for the Day – or Research/Writing Time for CD Projects

 

Thursday, July 28

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Presentations and Reflections on the Meanings of “Religion” on the Upper West Side

Each research team will present a brief slide show of its fieldwork findings, and discuss the definition of “religion” that emerged in its research.

11:30      Lunch

12:30      Concluding Reflections on Panel discussions, Site Visits, Walking Tour, and Fieldwork Project

Focusing on strategies and challenges for community-based religious diversity education in public, private, and faith-based schools.  Would programs like these work in your school?  How else can you introduce your students to everyday life of American religious diversity?  What aspects of our work in the institute can and can’t you translate into your teaching?

Part 1 in small groups.  Brief Break.  Part 2 facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt.

Optional:     

Michael Umphrey, The Power of Community-Centered Education: Teaching as a Craft of Place (Rowman & Littlefield, 2007), chaps 1 and 8

Henry Goldschmidt, “Being There: What do Students Learn by Visiting Houses of Worship?” in CrossCurrents, Vol 68, No 3, Pp 394-411 (September 2018)

Linda K. Wertheimer, Faith Ed: Teaching about Religion in an Age of Intolerance (Beacon Press, 2015), chap. 2

3:30        Done for the Day – or Time to Finish up CD Projects

Curriculum Development Projects due in Google Drive Folder by 6:00 pm

 

Friday, July 29

8:30        Coffee and Light Refreshments

9:00        Presentation and Discussion of Curriculum Development Projects

Part 1 in small groups.  Brief Break.  Part 2 facilitated by Henry Goldschmidt.

12:00      Farewell and Institute Evaluations

12:30      Done for the Day – and for the Summer

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