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2011/12 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

THEO2270 African Traditional Religion

20 creditsClass Size: 80

Module manager: Dr Kevin Ward
Email: trskw@leeds.a.cuk

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2011/12

This module is approved as an Elective

Module summary

African Traditional Religion is an introduction to the religious dimension of society and culture in sub-Saharan Africa. It explores the importance of the oral transmission of values, the place of communal rites of passage, the concern for health and healing, and of traditional medicines and divination in this process. Fears of evil, destruction and witchcraft are addressed. The course includes a study of the religion of the Yoruba, the Baganda and of other important African communities.

Objectives

To introduce students to the diversity of indigenous African religious traditions via the religious concepts, rituals, institutions, practitioners and ethics of particular African peoples. To make students aware of the problems inherent in studying oral religions from an academic and literary point of view. To examine traditional religions thematically and through an investigation of particular societies (eg Nuer, Dinka, Yoruba, Igbo, Ganda, Shona, Ndembu).

Syllabus

Traditional religion and its place in African society; the spirit world: ancestors, gods, spirit possession; ideas of a supreme being; the understanding of humanity; the religious significance of rites of passage; rituals of kingship and authority; the role of religious experts: diviners, prophets, priests; disharmony and disfunction in society: sickness and healing; witchcraft and sorcery; evil and death; the importance of women in African religion; African traditional religions in social protest and political resistance; the adaptation of African religious ideas to modern urban society.

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Lecture221.0022.00
Seminar31.003.00
Private study hours175.00
Total Contact hours25.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Attendance monitoring. Draft essays.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information


Coursework
Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay2,000-3,000 words40.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)40.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated


Exams
Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc)2 hr 00 mins60.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)60.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 04/12/2012

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