Religious Studies | Capstone Seminar in Religion: Spiritual Autobiography
R474 | 3652 | Mary Jo Weaver
We will read some classics of spiritual autobiography (mostly in
Western Christianity) in an effort to understand two things: the need
to produce such a text and the story contained therein. Students are
expected to consult some secondary literature (lists will be
provided) as they try to understand the context and content of these
works; but generally we will concentrate on the texts themselves.
Seminars can be fun only if everyone is meticulously prepared and
willing to engage the material. A good percentage of the final grade
in this class will be based on participation. Those who like to sit
back and take it all in should probably not take this course.
Tentative Reading List: Augustine, "The Confessions"; Teresa of
Avila, "Autobiography"; Thomas Merton, "Seven Storey Mountain";
Dorothy Day, "The Long Loneliness"; Ghandi, "An Autobiography";
Simone Weil, "Waiting for God"
Though we may occasionally have a short reading quiz, grades will be
assigned on the basis of seminar preparation (having read the
assignment, looked into other sources, thought of some questions) and
participation and one fabulous term paper that will be written in a
sequence that, finally, allows all class members a chance to read
each personís work and critique it.
Permission of instructor is required for the course.