R. Marie Griffith
Washington University in St. Louis
Campus Box 1066
One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130-4899
Religion, Gender, and American Politics
- Moral Combat: How Sex Divided American Christians and Fractured American Politics (forthcoming, Basic Books)
- “Billy James Hargis and His Partners: Mobilizing a Christian Sexual Revolution.”
- Religion and Politics in the Contemporary United States, co-edited with Melani McAlister (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008).
- American Religions: A Documentary History (New York: Oxford University Press, 2007).
- Women and Religion in the African Diaspora: Knowledge, Power, and Performance, co-edited with Barbara Dianne Savage (Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006).
- Born Again Bodies: Flesh and Spirit in American Christianity (University of California Press, 2004).
- God’s Daughters: Evangelical Women and the Power of Submission (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997; paperback 2000).
L23 2010 Religion and American Society
This course explores religious life in the United States. We will focus our study on groups and movements that highlight distinctive ways of being both ”religious” and ”American,” including the Americanization of global religions in the US context. Major themes will include religious encounter and conflict; secularization, resurgent traditionalism, and new religious establishments; experimentalism, eclecticism, and so-called ”spiritual” countercultures; the relationship between religious change and broader social and political currents (including clashes over race, class, gender, and sexuality); and the challenges of religious multiplicity in the US. You will: 1) acquire knowledge of the disparate religions practiced in North America during the twentieth century and beyond; 2) examine some of the chief conflicts as well as alliances between religion and the American social order in a global context; and 3) develop interpretive tools for understanding religion´s present and enduring role in the US and the world. Same as home course L57 RelPol 201.
L23 321 American Religion, Gender, and Sexuality
Religious beliefs about gender and sexuality have long played a vital role in American politics, vividly evident in debates over such issues as birth control, censorship, pornography, funding for AIDS research, abortion, contraceptive access, abstinence-only sex education, sexual harassment, same-sex marriage, and more. Educated citizens need to understand the impact of these religiously inflected debates on our political culture. This course explores the centrality of sex to religion and politics in the U.S., emphasizing Christianity (both Protestant and Catholic forms) and its weighty social and political role regulating the behavior of women and men, children and teens, as well as its uses in legal and judicial decisions. Alongside scholarly readings in gender and sexuality, we will discuss popular devotional texts-on chastity, marriage, and homosexuality-with a political bent. Students will leave the course able to analyze how religious beliefs about sex shape specific gender norms central to U.S. politics. Same as home course L57 RelPol 321.