Religion in

REL 410.001
Religion & Genocide


Steve Jacobs

Office: 201 Manly Hall
Office Phone: 348-0473
Office Hours: TBA

Course Time
: TR 12:30-1:45
Location: Manly 210

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 course seeks to explore the phenomenon of genocide by examining its relationship to the phenomenon of religion in both its institutional and theological frameworks, beginning with those scriptural passages having genocidal intent. Both historical examples and contemporary examples are likewise examined to ascertain whether or not there are religious components to their genocides. Format of the course will be lectures, discussions of readings, student presentations, and, where appropriate, video and other materials.


Spring 2016 (PDF)

Assignments (TBA)

Books (required)

Apsel, Joyce and Ernesto Verdeja, eds.
Genocide Matters: Ongoing Issues and Emerging Perspectives
Routledge, 2013
ISBN: 978-0415814966

Bertrop, Paul
Genocide: The Basics
Routledge, 2014
ISBN: 978-0415817257

Galloway, Steven
The Cellist of Sarajevo
Riverhead Books, 2009
ISBN: 978-1594483653

Jacobs, Steven
Confronting Genocide: Judaism, Christianity, Islam
Lexington Books, 2009
ISBN: 978-0739135891

Meierhenrich, Jens
Genocide: A Reader
Oxford University Press, 2014
ISBN: 978-0195377705

Trebincevic, Kenan
The Bosnia List: A memoir of War, Exile, and Return
Penguin, 2014
ISBN: 978-0143124573

Online Readings

Abed, Mohammed, "Clarifying the Concept of Genocide" (PDF)

Card, Claudia, "Genocide and Social Death" (PDF)

Davis, Derek H., "Confronting Ethnic Cleansing in the Twenty-First Century" (PDF)

"Effective Source Analysis" (PDF)

"Genocide: Humanity's Worst Plague" (PDF)

Jones, "Sacred Violence: the dark side of God" (PDF)

Historical and Investigative Research (PDF)

Selected Websites on Genocide Studies (PDF)

Semelin, "What is 'Genocide?'" (PDF)

Smith, "The Concept of Genocide" (PDF)

Stephens, Bret, "How to Manage Savagery" (PDF)

"Early Warning I" (PDF)

"Early Warning II" (PDF)

"Early Warning III" (PDF)