RELI 0290

Women and the Sacred

Women and the Sacred in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
This course will explore the female religious experience in Greco-Roman antiquity and Early Christianity. We shall trace the transition from the mystery religions of Demeter and Isis in the Eastern Mediterranean to the cult of Mary the Mother of God (Theotokos) and the worship of female saints. Drawing on a wide range of sources (hymns, saints' Lives, Apocryphal Gospels, Patristic texts, and icons), we shall study the varieties of female devotion and examine the roles available to women in the early Church: deaconesses and desert mothers, monastics and martyrs, poets and rulers. Different theoretical approaches will enable us to ask a series of questions: were women in the early Church considered capable of holiness? To what extent did the female 'gifts of the spirit' challenge church authority? What is distinct about the feminine experience of the divine? Finally, we shall consider the vision and poetics of female spirituality in select modern poets. 3 hrs. lect.
Requirements Fulfilled:
Equivalent Courses:
CLAS 0290
GSFS 0290
WAGS 0290


Spring 2023

RELI0290A-S23 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-S23 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-S23 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Spring 2018

RELI0290A-S18 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-S18 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-S18 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Fall 2014

RELI0290A-F14 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-F14 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-F14 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Fall 2012

RELI0290A-F12 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-F12 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-F12 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Spring 2011

RELI0290A-S11 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290B-S11 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-S11 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-S11 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Fall 2008

RELI0290A-F08 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-F08 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-F08 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Spring 2006

RELI0290A-S06 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Y-S06 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)
RELI0290Z-S06 Discussion (Hatjigeorgiou)

Spring 2005

RELI0290A-S05 Lecture (Hatjigeorgiou)