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Religion and society 2


Compulsory attendance


Admission requirements

Bachelor’s degree obtained, admission to the RMA-programme.


Religion and society is an umbrella term for a choice between 2 tracks: students interested in the Caribbean region choose the course Communicating communities (10 ects, uSis code 1045I05Y), students with an interest in Mesoamerica choose Intercultural communication 1A + 1B (10 ects, uSis code 1045I06AY + 1045I06BY).

This seminar is situated at the heart of ongoing research in the specialisation, focusing on the archaeology, history and anthropology of indigenous American cultures. RMA-students as well as PhD-candidates work on their thesis in focused groups, formed according to region (or theme), and receive specialised instruction in tutorials focusing either on the Caribbean/Amazonian region or on Mesoamerica and the Andes. For general topics these groups may be combined in common sessions.

Students identify and evaluate the most important publications, especially relevant articles in recent issues of leading journals, and write a review of a monograph that is crucial for their thesis research.
RMA-students are expected to attend all guest lectures of the specialisation programme (to be announced during the year). In addition, RMA-students attend an international symposium, workshop or congress, to be selected in consultation with their thesis supervisor. Students are required to prepare the meeting with a paper.

Course objectives

  • Knowledge of the state of the art regarding the region and discipline of thesis research;

  • Ability to formulate a research topic in the framework of modern scholarly discussions;

  • Exercising analytical and library research skills;

  • Preparation and elaboration of the thesis project exercising skills of oral presentation, discussion and writing;

  • Ability to draft a research proposal and plan concrete fieldwork and other research activities.

Ects distribution

The course load will be distributed as follows:

  • 28×2 hours of lectures;

  • 420 pages of literature;

  • Assignments and papers.


Course schedule details can be found in the RMA time schedule.

Mode of instruction

Seminar with student’s reports, commenting on the structure of research and thesis, with analytic discussion of recent publications.

Assessment method

  • Active participation in the seminar discussion;

  • Written assignments;

  • Presentation of recent literature related to the topic of the thesis, and a presentation of the thesis research results to an international forum.

Assessment deadline

The assignments should be handed in by the end of the course.

Reading list

Partly indicated during the seminar, partly to be identified by the students themselves.


Register for this course via uSis.
Instructions for registration can be found in the uSis manual.

Contact information

For more information about this course, please contact prof. dr M.E.R.G.N. Jansen (Mesoamerica) or mw prof. dr C.L. Hofman (Caribbean).