Religion, Politics and Extremism

7-8-04

Mercer County Community College has inaugurated a series of courses in religious studies that seek to answer questions about world religions and their effect on society. Dr. Kenneth I. Rothman, associate professor of philosophy, is the principal designer of the nonsectarian series.

The series begins with "Introduction to Religious Studies" (REL101) which will explore the worldwide phenomenon of religious experience, religious differences, and how religions extend our awareness of human experience and culture. The course will be offered this fall in day and evening sessions.

Also coming this fall, on weekdays and a Saturday session, will be "Politics, Religion and Extremism" (REL211, also offered as POL211) which will look at the connections between some religious beliefs and violence. Through case studies of events in the world today, students will learn about how religions and political movements affect each other.

"Encounters Between Religions, Studied Through Literature" (REL235, also offered at ENG235) began this summer. Through literature, students are studying how people with different religious backgrounds come into contact -- and sometimes conflict -- with each other.

Dr. Thomas N. Wilfrid, MCCC's vice president for academic and student affairs, is enthusiastic about this new series of courses. "The nonsectarian study of religion is an important component of the curriculum at many public colleges. It is an essential part of understanding the nature of humanity and of the modern world. We hope that many students and community members will explore these offerings."

For more information contact MCCC's Liberal Arts Division at 609-586-4800 ext. 3325 or email zambrios@mccc.edu. MCCC's fall semester begins August 30. Previously registered students can register online at www.mccc.edu. New students should call the Admissions Office at 609-586-0505.

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