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    Macalester College
  Feb 23, 2018
College Catalog 2014-2015 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

RELI 336 - Gender, Caste, Deity

Since sociologists and anthropologists have long argued that people think about religion and the divine in categories that correlate closely to their social system, it is not surprising that they have been especially interested in the religion and society of India. Beginning with the classic account of the caste system by social anthropologist Louis Dumont, we will examine is view of the hierarchical nature of society and its relationship to religious views that affirm and assume hierarchy in human and divine worlds. From there we will go on to consider the many responses to Dumont’s view, including studies of gender roles; sexuality in mythology and ascetic traditions; untouchability; religious hierarchy and political power; and, resistance to and inversions of hierarchical systems in India. Every other year. (4 Credits)