Religious Studies | Sin, Violence, and Utopia
R300 | 3735 | Hart

R300 Sin, Violence, and Utopia (3 Cr.) TR 2:30-3:45 M242 (section

In this class we will begin by discussing the philosophical and
theological problem of utopia.  Sin and violence will be minor themes, as
the obvious obstacles to eu-topia, i.e., a possible better social
arrangement.  We will probably begin with reading Starhawk's novel, The
Fifth Sacred Thing, and (the Gandhian) Vinoba Bhave's Democratic Values.
We will then discuss three major features of larger society today: 1) its
character of being a mega-machine, 2) the difficulty of finding "good
work," and 3) the difficulty of being responsible for what we are doing.
For this we will look at some writings of Lewis Mumford, Jerry Mander, and
Rudolf Bahro.  We will finally reflect on possibilities of change,
especially in terms of economics.  Some texts of Marx and more
subsistence-focused thinkers will also be discussed.