Boston University’s Graduate Program in Religion is the university home for the advanced humanistic study of religion. Our mission is to train scholars of religion who will distinguish themselves through research, teaching, and service to universities, colleges, seminaries, and the world at large.
Who We Are
Our core faculty is drawn from Boston University’s Department of Religion, joined by distinguished affiliated faculty from across Boston University departments with shared interests, including History, Philosophy, English, Sociology, Anthropology, Romance Studies, World Languages and Literature, and Classical Studies, as well as the Pardee School of Global Studies and the schools of Law, Medicine, and Theology.
Diverse in approaches, methods, and fields of expertise, our faculty members are united by our shared commitment to the excellence in the study of religion, the value of interdisciplinary engagement, and the necessity of both the freedom of inquiry and civility in academic discourse. We passionately believe in the vital importance of religious studies for understanding our world.
The enduring commitment of Boston University to the cross-disciplinary study of religion is well known and long-standing. Our students draw on this tradition, on abundant academic and professional resources, and on diverse scholarly approaches throughout their program of study, whether their focus is on religion as a matter of faith or of practice, of texts or of traditions, or of philosophical or political engagement. Boston University’s exceptional history and intellectual strength provide especially fertile ground for students wishing to explore multiple, thematic fields in the study of religion: e.g., the study of Ritual and Material Culture; or the Body, Gender, and Sexuality; or even the role of Religion in Literature and Visual Culture. Such themes can be pursued within one of our six specializations which include: Buddhist Studies; Islamic Studies; Jewish Studies; Religions in American Culture; Religions of the Ancient Mediterranean World; Religion in Philosophy, Politics, and Society.
The Graduate Program in Religion offers a framework for students to engage in the advanced study of various religious traditions and phenomena and to acquire skills in cognate academic disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. Our curriculum instills methodological rigor and comparative breadth while allowing students to deepen their knowledge of their chosen subjects. Our graduates are, consequently, well prepared to serve as scholars and teachers at universities, liberal arts colleges, and other institutions of higher learning, or to assume other professional roles that contribute to critical discourse and public understanding of religion.