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Religion in Public: Great Images

In the study of the religious ‘discourse’, great importance is often ascribed to the centrality of words and verbal expressions. Religion is too often seen as a matter of reading and interpreting religious texts and holy books and verbal acquisition of doctrinal and dogmatic formulations. Religious expression, however, is also a function of the eyes, where seeing and being seen play a central role in the public expression of religious thoughts.

The purpose of this module is to offer a fresh approach to materiality and visual culture in the religious discourse, promoting an understanding of the acts of seeing and being seen as religious and social acts from antiquity to contemporary society. Examples will include the depiction of crucifixion in early Christianity, the Annunciation in European culture, the role of the visual in religious devotion and worship (e.g. the function of icons in the Orthodox Christian tradition) and in the study of important landmarks of Islamic architecture, and the use of sacred images in religious propaganda and in the portrayal of religious dialogue and conflict.

Name of lecturers

Professors Damien Janos, Daniele Pevarello, Cathriona Russell, Dr Gesa Thiessen

How to apply

Applications can be made in person on Thursday 15th December 2016, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m. in the Department of Religions and Theology, Room 5010, Level 5 of the Arts Building, Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin, Dublin 2 or by post before 20th December 2016.


EUR 150 for the course. For security reasons payment should be by cheque/draft/postal money order only, made payable to Trinity College Dublin no. 1 account. A concession rate is available to second and third level students, unemployed persons and those in receipt of a social welfare pension.


Teaching commences during the week beginning 16th January 2017. Please note this is a day-time course.


The course runs for a total of twelve weeks, with no lectures in week 7.

Further Information

Contact: Jane Welch, Executive Officer, Department of Religions and Theology, Arts Building, Trinity College, Dublin 2. Phone: 01 896 1297, email: