Liberal Arts and Management Program | Religion, Health and Healthcare Management
L416 | 4511 | Candy Gunther Brown
Is religion good (or bad) for your health? How should healthcare
providers and administrators respond to the religious beliefs of
patients and their families? What are the moral and legal
obligations for informed consent when religiously-infused
alternative therapies are made available in healthcare facilities?
How should spiritual healing practices or refusal of medical
treatment be understood? Why are religious healing claims so often
hotly contested? This course will explore these and other questions
that arise when religion, health, and healthcare management
intersect. Assignments and classroom activities will draw upon a
wide variety of cultural artifacts, such as empirical research,
cartoons, audio and video recordings, fiction, internet resources,
and feature films. The course will develop skills in critical
thinking, written and oral communication, and analysis of primary
and secondary documents.
There are no specific prerequisites for enrollment, but some
basic familiarity with American religious history will be assumed.
The course will be conducted as an advanced discussion seminar;
active participation by all enrolled students is expected. The
professor will spend limited time lecturing and presenting
audiovisual materials, reserving much time for lively discussion.
We will read both primary and secondary sources that
consider course themes from various vantage points. The course will
emphasize religious approaches to health and healing (such as divine
healing and deliverance, a.k.a. exorcism) that stem from Christian
beliefs and practices, but we will also consider healing
alternatives (such as chiropractic, yoga, Tai Chi, acupuncture,
homeopathy, macrobiotic diets, Therapeutic Touch, Reiki, Mindfulness
Meditation, curanderismo) that draw upon a wider range of religious
traditions. In addition, we will discuss medical and
psychotherapeutic approaches to health and healing, and we will
consider opportunities and challenges for those working in
Students will be evaluated on consistency and quality of
participation in class discussions and on completion of a term
research project (including submission of a paper prospectus,
annotated bibliography, outline, rough draft, and final paper of 10-
20 pages). There will not be a midterm or final examination.
Above course limited to LAMP students - must obtain permission.