Admission decisions are based on applicants’ statement of purpose, writing sample, and letters of reference. There is no ideal route to this program. Students may apply with a background in any of the humanistic or social scientific disciplines, with the expectation that there has been significant exposure to the study of ideas and to the challenges of thinking with history, concept, and culture. Students who apply to Religion and Modernity will have interests that fall within multiple disciplines. The rigor of the program inheres in the mastery of a case, a question, a context, a text, a mind, a comparison – a work of research and thought that sheds light on religion and modernity in some of the numerous ways these terms and histories can be conceived.
The statement of purpose should include an identification of your principal research interests and questions, a conceptual account of your work to date along with a discussion of its role in your decision to pursue advanced study, and an assessment of what your work aims to contribute to the field of religious studies and scholarship in the humanities more broadly.