ATS3157 - Religion, politics and violence - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Centre for Religious Studies

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Aydogan Kars


Dr Aydogan Kars

Not offered in 2019


Religious texts from many traditions frequently invoke imagery of violence, war and struggle while also celebrating ideals of harmony, peace and justice. Do such texts make religions responsible for promoting violence, or is this a consequence of specific contexts, political, social and economic that shape the way such texts are interpreted? Is there any place for such rhetoric in contemporary society? This unit looks at a range of texts from Eastern religions and from Judaism, Christianity and Islam, in both past and present manifestations, to consider how their interpreters have engaged with the question of legitimizing violence and war against minorities or other groups in society and how such imagery may shape their understanding of an ideal world.


Upon successful completion of the unit, students will be able to:

  1. critically interpret different forms of religious texts that invoke violence;
  2. explain both literary genre and political context in shaping religious texts;
  3. analyse these texts utilising a number of theoretical frameworks;
  4. utilise research skills to formulate and conduct an independent research essay;
  5. communicate research in oral and written formats.


Within semester assessment: 70%

Exam: 30%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study