Religion in

REL 237.001
Self, Society, & Religion


Dr. Matt Bagger

Phone: (205) 348-8685
Office: 315B Manly Hall
Office Hours: TR 5-6 pm

Class Time: TR 9:30-10:45
Class Location: Gordon Palmer 231

About Online Readings

Some of the course's online readings are placed in a "secure" folder; you can only access these PDF files (Portable Document Format, that can be opened with the free Adobe Reader) by clicking each link and then entering the username/password given to you in class.

If you have difficulty accessing these readings, contact the instructor by email.




What is a self & does it consist in one's "identity?" Is "identity" something one discovers or is it something one creates or even performs? What personal & social mechanisms effect self-transformation and how do religious institutions "mortify" the self? This course studies classics on selfhood and identity & examines such historical texts as Teresa of Avila's Way of Perfection and Shantideva's Guide to the Boddhisattva's Way of Life.


Spring 2017 (PDF)

Books (required)

Goffman, Erving

Penguin, UK, 1991
ISBN:  0140137394

Mahmood, Saba
Politics of Piety
Princeton University Press, 2005
ISBN: 0691086958

Online Readings

Other texts will be available through the Blackboard course site.