Religion in

REL 371.001
Asian Religions in American Culture

The Old Temple of the Vedanta Society of Northern California in San Francisco California (built in 1908).

Dr. Michael Altman

Office: 205 Manly Hall
Office Phone: (205) 348-7223
Course: W 3:30-5:50
Location: 210 Manly

Visit REL 371's blog Monks and Nones: Studying Asian Religions in American Culture

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.




This seminar introduces the history and development of Asian religions in America from the nineteenth century to the present. Focusing mainly on various forms of Hinduism and Buddhism, consideration will be given to immigrant groups, American-born converts, and the ways Asian religions have been represented and imagined in American culture. ASST


Spring 2015 (PDF)

Books (required)

Iwamura, Jane Naomi
Virtual Orientalism: Asian Religions and American Popular Culture
Oxford University Press, 2011
ISBN: 0199738610

Seager, Richard H.
Buddhism in America (revised edition, 2012)
Columbia University Press, 2012
ISBN: 0231159730

Williamson, Lola
Transcendent in America: Hindu-Inspired Meditation Movements as New Religion
NYU Press, 2010
ISBN: 0814794505


To be announced