The University of Newcastle, Australia
Not currently offered
Course code



10 units


3000 level

Course handbook


Although sociologists such as Marx and Durkheim predicted that religion would eventually dissipate like a fog over a clouded culture, the picture today is more complex. Religions continue to survive, and even thrive in our global multicultural societies. This can be seen in the news media, which regularly reports religiously motivated violence, the political sphere where presidents and prime ministers alike increasingly refer to their 'faith', and, as well, in a number of popular films and novels which take religion as their primary theme. So too, so called 'world religions' such as Christianity and Islam continue to spread in both northern and southern hemisphere contexts, raising a number of important questions about their new forms and cultural interactions. This course will explore this persistent visibility of religion and how it impacts secular societies. It will examine key religious, social and political philosophers.


Not currently offered.

Replacing course(s)

This course replaces the following course(s): RELT3020. Students who have successfully completed RELT3020 are not eligible to enrol in PHIL3041.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Understand religion's impact upon secular societies;

2. Critically analyse key theorisations of religion in secular society with philosophical sophistication;

3. Demonstrate advanced, writing, research and information technology skills appropriate to studies in philosophy and religion.


The course will address recent theories concerning the visibility of religion in the contemporary era.  

Assumed knowledge

20 units of PHIL coded subjects

Assessment items

Essay: Essay - 30%

Essay: Essay - 50%

Online Learning Activity: Online learning task