Welcome to the Religion Department

The CGU Religion Department contributes to the disciplined study of religion, including—but also transcending—considerations of particular communities of belief and practice. With small classes and a flexible curriculum, the department trains graduate students with the theories, methods, and knowledge that they need to participate in and shape the study of religion in the twenty-first century, as well as to apply those tools to productive careers in- or outside the academy. Faculty members conduct innovative research advancing the critical scholarly analysis of religion and are trained in diverse fields including religious studies, history, philosophy, theology, archaeology, and more.

Building on collaborative academic relationships with other CGU departments, the Claremont School of Theology, and The Claremont Colleges, the Religion Department provides students with outstanding opportunities for developing their own intellectual interests and for excelling in their chosen fields. CGU is home to the field’s leading journal, Journal of the American Academy of Religion, and also enjoys strong partnerships with local religious communities such as Coptic Christians, Mormons, and Muslims. This blend of theoretical sophistication with attention to lived communities of belief and practice—combined with a vibrant campus life including student associations and conferences—provides an optimal setting for students to enrich their academic and professional education in religious studies.

The department offers five degree programs complemented by multiple areas of study within these programs: MA in Religion, MA in Islamic Studies, MA in Women’s Studies in Religion, MA in Religion & American Politics, and the PhD in Religion. Students in the MA in Religion program may choose a formal concentration in Critical Comparative Scriptures, History of Christianity & Religions of North America, or Philosophy of Religion & Theology. Students in the Religion PhD program are required to choose from the following areas of study: Critical Comparative Scriptures, History of Christianity & Religions of North America, Philosophy of Religion & Theology, or Women’s Studies. The Religion department also offers informal tracks of study open to all degree programs: Coptic Studies, Mormon Studies, and Zoroastrian Studies. In addition to the areas of specialization within the Religion Department, students may also pursue an interdisciplinary concentration in one of the following areas: American Studies, Continental Philosophy, Early Modern Studies, Hemispheric & Transnational Studies, Media Studies, or Museum Studies.

Our programs are student centered and characterized by personal attention and flexibility. Working closely with a responsive staff and engaged faculty, students have the opportunity to create a course of study that is best suited to their needs and interests. CGU’s broad-based humanistic training equips its religion students with research capabilities, analytical methods, and writing and other communication skills that are valuable in many fields.

Chair: Ruqayya Khan
831 N. Dartmouth Avenue • Claremont, CA 91711 • 909-621-8612 • Fax 909-607-9587

Ruqayya Y. Khan profile image

Ruqayya Y. Khan

Associate Professor of Religion
Malas Chair of Islamic Studies
Chair, Religion Department

 

Religion Department Faculty
Ingolf Dalferth profile image

Ingolf Dalferth

Danforth Professor of Philosophy of Religion

Ruqayya Y. Khan profile image

Ruqayya Y. Khan

Associate Professor of Religion
Malas Chair of Islamic Studies
Chair, Religion Department

Patrick Mason profile image

Patrick Mason

Dean, School of Arts & Humanities
Associate Professor of Religion
Howard W. Hunter Chair of Mormon Studies

Anselm Min profile image

Anselm Min

Professor of Religion

Daniel Ramírez profile image

Daniel Ramírez

Associate Professor of Religion

Tammi J. Schneider profile image

Tammi J. Schneider

Professor of Religion

Sallama Shaker profile image

Sallama Shaker

Full Clinical Professor of Middle East and Islamic Studies

 

Research Centers

Coptic Studies Council

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CGU’s Council for Coptic Studies works to create and nourish vibrant, enduring relationships between the Religion Department, the surrounding community, and the Coptic world and to promote through research, teaching, and publication a deeper understanding of the Coptic religious experience.

 


Mormon Studies Council

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The Mormon Studies Council works closely with the Religion Department and School of Arts and Humanities to advance Mormon Studies at Claremont Graduate University. The Council seeks to foster interest in the study of the traditions descended from Joseph Smith in an academic context in which many religious traditions are studied alongside one another.

 


Zoroastrian Studies Council

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The Zoroastrian Studies Council seeks to bring knowledge of this ancient, yet modern religion to our students and inform the study of religion at CGU.


 

Research Projects

 


Mormon Women’s Oral History Project

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The Mormon Women’s Oral History Project at Claremont Graduate University collected interviews with Mormon women of various ages, experiences, and levels of activity. These interviews record the experiences of these women in their homes and family life, their church life, and their work life, in their roles as homemakers, students, missionaries, career women, single women, converts, and disaffected members. Their stories feed into and illuminate the broader narrative of LDS history and belief, filling in a large gap in Mormon history that has often neglected the lived experiences of women.

 


Claremont Coptic Encyclopedia

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The web-based Claremont Coptic Encyclopedia (CCE) is a project of global reach and significance, providing a vital resource and a wealth of information to scholars, students, Coptophiles, and the general public. Whether you are a PhD student writing a dissertation on Coptic monasticism, a college student taking a course in Art History, or a casual browser seeking intellectual nourishment, you will find the CCE to be an excellent resource.

 

Featured Programs