Religion: Student Projects

Senior Capstone courses are designed to provide a culminating experience to the religion major. 

There are two paths to completing the capstone experience. One option is the RELG 401-402 sequence that is taken during the fall and spring semesters, respectively. This two-course sequence is designed for those who choose to research and write an extended research paper as a capstone experience.

The second option is RELG 405, Senior Readings Colloquium, which is only offered in the spring semester. This course is designed for students to have shared reflection about their academic work in the major through reading and writing reflections on common themes within the field of religion.

Spring 2024 Projects
Religion 402 Senior Capstone

Audrey Amstutz
Opulent Nothingness: The Mystical Novels of Clarice Lispector

Sasha Goldman
Reaching the Limit Case: Disassembling Form and Language to Represent Deep Memories of Holocaust Trauma in Works by Gerhard Richter and Zbigniew Libera

Rosalie Kenward
Transcendent Birth: Examining Birth as a Spiritual and Religious Experience

Yana Levy
Orientalism and the Remaking of Moroccan Jewish Identity

Ruby Martinez
Teshuva: Repentance and Return: How Anti-Zionist Jews are Reimagining Holidays and Inhabiting Biblical Narratives to Envision their Olan Ha'Ba

Fall 2023 Projects
Religion 401 Senior Capstone

Audrey Amstutz   
Radiant Nothingness

Sash Goldman   
Giving Form to the Inconceivable: Holocaust Memory examined in Zbigniew Libera’s Lego Concentration Camp

Michael Hastings
Peripheral Circulation Ideas Transmitted through Blood in Late Medieval Christian­ Art

Rosalie Kenward
On the Farm: Exploring the Spiritual and Religious Roots of Ina May Gaskin’s Spiritual Midwifery

Grace LeBlanc
“Hear the Trumpets Hear the Pipers”: Apocalypticism in Johnny Cash’s Music

Yana Levy
The Perpetual Remaking of Moroccan Jewish Communities

Ruby Martinez
Explorations of Jewish Identity to Israel/Palestine Through the Lens of Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur, and the Days of Awe

Ella Mattingly
The Multiplicity of Ṣalāt ( صلاة ): Frameworks of Ṣalāt’s Meaning in a Variety of Cultural Contexts

Spring 2023 Projects
Religion 402 Senior Capstone

Nicole Chase
So It Was, So It Will Be: Mirrored Dictatorships and Revolutionary Symbolism in Nicaragua

Elliot Diaz
Philo of Alexandria and Exodus 21:22-23: Ancient Biblical Citations and the Politics of Personhood

Lena Golia
Staging Their Beliefs: Religious Funeral Rites in the Ancient World

Anna Jefferis
Conduit of Sin: From Eve to Temptress

Parker Niles
Buddha in a Box: Exploring Museum and Ritual Meanings of Animate Himalayan Sculpture

Luia Soman
Psalters and Penitence: Forgiveness and Religious Violence in the First Crusade

Fall 2022 Projects
Religion 401 Senior Capstone

Emory Bradley     
Intertwined: Christianity and Politics in Rural North Carolina

Chloe Cattaneo    
When Jews cry out to God, and Buddha Answers: Jewish Suffering in the Poetry of Allen Ginsberg, Leonard Cohen, and Norman Fischer

Sophia Cotraccia  
The Steelband and African Religion in Trinidad and Tobago

Alex Davisson      
One Hundred Years of Constraining Catholic Women: Female Identity in Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Cien Años de Soledad

Elliot Diaz             
Philo of Alexandria and Exodus 21:22-3: Legitimizing the Particular into the Universal

Jenna Frizzell       
Early Religious History of Epidemiology in Japan: The Gods that Caused the First Epidemics

Lena Golia            
Staging Their Beliefs: Religious Funeral Rites in the Ancient World

Isaiah Hammer    
Prophet of Doom: Bob Dylan and the Cuban Missile Crisis

Catherine Horowitz  
Nice Jewish Golems: Performed Jewish Masculinity in the Work of Julie Weitz

Anna Jefferis        
Biblical Femininity: Eve in Genesis and Its Retellings

Signe Meyer        
The Seduction of Western Secularism: Saudi Religious Reform under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

Parker Niles         
Buddas Behind Glass: Exploring Museum Meanings of Animate Tibetan Bronzes

Marshall Palacios
Our Lady of Liberation and Subjugation as Depicted in La Rosa de Guadalupe

Lucy Soman         
“Forgive us our Trespasses”: Weaponizing Forgiveness through the Christian Apocalyptic in the First Crusade

Spring 2022 Projects
RELG 402 Senior Capstone

Charlotte Apter
The Promise of Protection: The Revolutionary Leadership of Rose Schneiderman and Clara Lemlich in Creating A New Jewish Identity

Christian Arnold
Breaking The Shackles of White Christianity

Julia Binder
Hindu Nationalism Versus "the West": A Rhetorical Analysis of Contemporary Hindu Nationalist Political Ideology

Sam Brinkley
Pissing On The Grave: Communal Schadenfreude and Zealous Ritual In The Public Square

Nadine Connamacher
An Instrument of (Un)Righteousness: The Use of Sin Doctrine in American Political Rhetoric

Francesca Kern
A Wesernized Worldview Deconstructed: Understanding Historical Approaches And Challenging the Legacies of Colonialism Through Vision and Memory of the Black Atlantic

Jesse Noily
Eros as Interpretation: The Place of Isaac ibn Sahula's Commentary on the Song of Songs in Classical Kabbalah

Eva Sturm-Gross
"The Book of Food"

Margaret Velto
Hallowed Be Their Name: Suberting the Heteropatriarchal God in the Christian Tradition

Rachel Wolchok
Conflicting Creation: Religious Colonization in the Treaty of Waitangi and Te Tiriti o Waitangi

Spring 2021 Projects
RELG 402 Senior Capstone

Alex Khater
The Roots of Division Bewteen the Mondern-Day Evangelical Christian and American Muslim Communities

Margo McLean
Is Astrology a Religion?  Symbolism of Zodiac in Art and Popular Culture

Gianna Volonte
Interpersonal Forgiveness: An Approach of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Rachel Wolchok
Conflicting Creation: Religious Colonization in the Treaty of Waitangi and Te Tiriti o Waitingi

2019-2020 Projects
RELG 401 and 402 Senior Capstone

Nalin Beckman
Contemporary Issues in Mithila Art

Mathew Bickett
Eschatology, Liturgy, and Ethics in David Lang’s the little match girl passion

Sophia Brewer-Thompson   
Diverging Values: An Argument for Comprehensive Sex Education in Modern Day Catholicism

Lucy Brown           
Finding the Bible in Contemporary Literature: Pullman’s Critical Rewrite of Genesis 3

Darlene Burker
A Life Worth Living: Sanctity of Life Versus Quality of Life in Catholic Ethics

Rehsan Bux
What Dreams May Come: Ethicality of Palliative Sedation in Catholic and Sunni Ethics

Joy Castro-Wehr
The Radical Activism of Dorothy Day Finding the Common Good in Pacifism and Economic Justice

Hannah Cipinko
Purity, Power, Restriction, and Rebellion: Niddah in the Lives of Jewish Women

William Cramer     
The Rise and Fall of Qigong

Johan Gelfand       
The Guru and the Rebbe: Relationality in the Devotional Practices of Neem Karoli Baba Maharaj-ji and Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson

Noa Gordon-Guterman
God as a Woman: Trauma and Nation Formation in Second-Isaiah

Mae Hardman-Hill
Windows to the Divine: Icons and the Sacred in Greek Orthodoxy

Julian Hirsch
Acquiring and Displaying the Oberlin Near East Study Collection 1931-1965

Noa Lewis             
Catholic Ethical Analysis of Assisted Reproductive Technologies, Cloning, and the Family

Hayley Segall         
1984: Trauma and the Evolution of the Punjabi Skih Identity

Olivia Summers     
Incarceration and Christianity: Prison Fellowship in the United States

Spring 2019 Projects
RELG 402 Senior Capstone

Katie Ryan-O'Flaherty
The Rural Urban Divide in Moroccan Walis

Shannon Silberhorn  
Mary Church Terrell: Public and Private Motherhood

Bryton Smith 
Nature of the Crescent: Humans and the Natural World in Genesis 1-11 and Mesopotamian Mythology

Sarah Williams         
Body and Blood: Divine Violence in the Mystical Writings of Medieval Women

Jackson Zinn-Rowthorn        
Authority, Abuse, and the Construction of Meaning in American Renzai Zen Communities         

Fall 2018 Projects
RELG 405 Senior Capstone

Sam Bailey    
Out of the Ground: An Ecofeminist Response to Lynn White Jr.'s The Histroical Roots of Our Ecological Crisis

Alex Broekhuijse       
Medea’s Madness: An Analysis of the Role of Religious Delusions in the Case of Andrea Yates

Evan Corey    
The Market as God: Market Fundamentalist Rhetoric in a Christian Deist Framework

Linnea Halsten          
The NoDAPL Resistance as a Practice of Sioux Religion

Emily Kelkar  
Feminism through Temporary Marriage in Shi'I Iran

Megan Kenney          
Becoming Change: Octavia Butler’s Earthseed and Green Religious Revitalization

Keifer Ludwig
Not Just Cunning: The Existential Importance of the Kitsune Within a Mytho-Religious Framework

Spring 2018 Projects
RELG 402 Senior Capstone

Ethan Aronson       
A Covenantal Theology of Protest: The Jewish Tradition of Moral Confrontation with God

Owen Ellerkamp      
Purifying the Sacred: How Hindu Nationalism Reshapes Environmentalism in Contemporary India

Claire Kotarski        
Gay Shamans and Gatekeepers: Radical Faeries and the Implications of “Playing Indian” in the New Age   

Rebecca Primoff       
“Muscle Judaism:” The German Origins of Modern Israeli Masculinity

Frances Purcell         
Rethinking the Purpose of Religion Education: Toward the Sociological Study of Religion in Public Schools

Daniel Thin   
Pluralism in Contemporary Burmese Buddhism

Fall 2017 Projects
RELG 405 Senior Capstone

Eitan Barkow
Marketing Mindfulness: Issues of Race and Religious Identity in American Convert Buddhism

Ryanne Berry
Reclaiming the Body: The Corporeal Spirituality, Physical Love, and Social Gain of Women Medieval Mystics

James Flemming
Islam on the Internet: The Great ‘Original’ Rebranding

Emily Isaacson
Faith-Based Community Organizations and their Contribution to Social Justice Movements: Building Diversity and Practicing Allyship and Solidarity in United States Cities

Abbie McCrea
Religion as a Positive Influence on Public Health: Faith Based Organizations Working to Eradicate Malarie

Lucas Nikkanen
Faith, Becoming and Doubt: Two Conversations with Paul Tillich

Jones Pitsker
Speeding Toward the End Eco-Apocalypse in Earth First! and MaddAddam

Noah Schiller
Gandhi’s Non-Violence as Spiritual Grounds for an Alternative Vision of Revolution

Michal Schorsch
Candomblé within Capoeira Religious Elements of the Afro-Brazilian Dance-Fight Form

Oliver Smith
Sounds of the Living Light: Understanding Hildegard of Bingen’s Mystical Impulse through Artistic Expression and Musical Composition

Olivia Tsang
A Sacred Biography Retold: Including Manga in Buddhist Scripture

Riley Walters
Does Virtue Take Two? Filling in St. Augustine’s conception of Christian Marriage with Mengzi’s Confucian Virtue Ethics

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