Gods of Today

Ref: C2226680

Who are the gods of today? Have the ancient gods been replaced by new divinities? Or have the gods all departed? This course will appeal to anyone interested in the range of characters who have been thought of as divine from ancient times until the present. We will imagine ourselves at the dawn of humanity as we compare the sun gods who were so central to early religions. We encounter the diverse pantheon of Greek gods, the unruly Norse gods, and African and American tricksters. We will hear about the death of the great god Pan and the coming of Christ. Finally, we will consider the new gods of the modern age, from the personal gods of the visionary poet William Blake to the gods of Media, Technology, and the Market, as found in Neil Gaiman’s novel American Gods.

Additional information about this course

Half term break on 29/10/2019

Course aim

Are the gods we used to worship still with us in new disguises? Through ancient pantheons, great religions, visionary poets, and modern pop-culture, we will discover the central role divinity has in our imaginations.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • interpret the common explanations of the origins of prehistoric religions
  • discuss a range of meaningful and entertaining stories from world mythology
  • recognize the return of the ancient gods in modern culture
  • appraise the great diversity of characters that we call "gods"

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • You may wish to bring a pad and pen for note-taking. Extracts from the texts will be supplied. You will be encouraged to research the topics outside class.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider

Download full course information sheet

Gods of Today

Enrolment Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2019
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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