Religious Freedom in America: A Legal History


This course introduces students to the major texts and historical arguments concerning religious liberty in the United States. We will place key constitutional texts and cases into a chronologically organized historical framework, covering: European precedents to English settlement, the colonial period, nation-making and the Constitution, the early national period of religious revival and expansion, the Civil War and 14th Amendment, Mormonism, fundamentalism and secularism in the Progressive Era, WWII and religious pacifism, The Cold War, the 1960s and school prayer, the rise of the Religious Right, and recent cases involving religious freedom. Only offered in the FOCUS program.

Enroll Consent

Department Consent Required

Drop Consent

Department Consent Required

Curriculum Codes
  • CCI
  • EI
  • W
  • CZ
Cross-Listed As
Typically Offered
Fall Only