3 June 2024

Biblical Foundations: Narrative, Wisdom, and the Art of Interpretation

How can we read and experience the Scriptures as the Word of Life in the midst of an Academy that believes the biblical witness will restrict human freedom and thwart our maturity? How may we pursue biblical wisdom as we “re-think the world” when our Christian traditions seem convinced that biblical truth may be disconnected from—or simply applied to—the most pressing and perplexing issues of our time? This course will explore the Bible—from Genesis to Revelation—as the ongoing story of and for God and all God’s creatures, paying special attention to the way in which humanity’s attempt to find its way is interwoven with the story of the Divine presence and with the wisdom and promise of creation-new creation. In asking whether and how the biblical story may find its future in our ongoing narratives, we will attempt to identify which hermeneutical methods and sensitivities might help us discern its significance for present day life, including the academic enterprise. If Jesus is the Living Word at the heart of Scripture, does that change our understanding of where biblical truth is coming from and where it is going? Does the Bible have an implicit, sapiential pedagogy that we have misconstrued? Can the familiar Reformed themes of creation and covenant, election and eschaton speak to us in new, reformational ways? These are some of the questions we shall explore together as we reintroduce ourselves to the biblical writings.


ICS 1108AC / 2108AC F24 **
ICB2010H L6201*
Remote (Online Synchronous)
Wednesdays, 6:00-9:00pm ET

(MWS, MA, MA-EL, PhD)


Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:
To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13, 2024. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.

*Attention TST students: if you are interested in taking this course for credit, you must petition your college of registration to count the course credit toward your degree program. 

**NOTE: Approved for Area 1 of the CSTC.

Cultivating Learning Communities of Belonging

This is a course for instructional leaders and administrators considering school and classroom cultures. Course content will include attention to social and cultural contexts, racial justice, Indigenous perspectives, human sexuality, restorative practices, and how these topics impact and form school and classroom cultures.

This course seeks to help students find clarity in answers to the following questions:

  • What is the relationship between the daily behaviour of educational leaders and the cultures of schools?
  • How do we awaken our students’ knowledge, creativity, and critical reflective capacities in our schools and classrooms?
  • How do racism and other forms of oppression underlie achievement gaps and alienation within our schools?
  • How can classroom learning be linked to larger movements seeking to effect change in the community?
  • How can school culture be a vehicle for social change?
  • How do we cultivate learning communities of belonging in our schools?



Dr. Edith van der Boom
ICSD 260008 F24*
Blended (Online Asynchronous/Synchronous)

(MA-EL)


Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:
To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13 (Note that the first class for this course takes place on September 12).  Maximum enrolment of twelve (12) students. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.


*Approved for Area 2 or 3 of the CSTC

Philosophy at the Limit: Richard Kearney

A study of Kearney’s trilogy Philosophy at the Limit as well as his Anatheism, focusing on his exploration of that “frontier zone where narratives flourish and abound.” Participants will examine Kearney’s attempt to sketch a narrative eschatology that draws on the work of Heidegger, Levinas, Derrida, and Ricoeur.


Dr. Ronald A. Kuipers
ICS 220508 F24
Remote (Online Synchronous)
Thursdays, 2:00-5:00pm ET

(MA, PhD)

Syllabus 


Enrolment Notes:

To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13, 2024. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.

*Attention TST students: if you are interested in taking this course for credit, you must petition your college of registration to count the course credit toward your degree program.

Facing the Darkness: The (Human) Nature of Evil

In this interdisciplinary theology seminar, we shall probe the origin and nature of evil by engaging key biblical, philosophical, psychological, and anthropological resources. Central to our discussions will be a sapiential (wisdom-oriented) re-reading of the Fall narrative of Genesis 3–4, set against the backdrop of the good, yet largely wild, creation of Genesis 1–2. In addition to surveying a variety of contemporary theodicies read up against the challenge offered by both “protest atheism” and the biblical lament literature (especially the book of Job), we shall also pay special attention to the correlation between victim and agent in the ongoing dynamics to “original sin” and to the concomitant role of fear in the construction of culture. In attending to evil’s (arguably) anthropocentric origin as a key to its present nature—which will prompt us to revisit our understanding of the primordial conditions of possibility along with the largely overlooked biblical connections between the Satan and the absolutization (and denaturing) of Justice—we shall also look ahead, via pondering the relationship between law and grace, to the promise of a (divine and human) judgment unto salvation.


ICS 120801 / 220801 F24
ICT3352H / ICT6352H L6201*
Remote (Online Synchronous)
Tuesdays, 10:00am-1:00pm ET

(MWS, MA, PhD)


Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:
To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13, 2024. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.

*Attention TST students: if you are interested in taking this course for credit, you must petition your college of registration to count the course credit toward your degree program. 

The Aesthetics of Compassion

The emotion of “pity” (eleos) or “compassion” is at the heart of Athenian tragedy, the great forbear of Western tragic drama. For Aristotle, creating feelings of pity and fear in an audience was thought to provoke a catharsis of those emotions that enabled a positive moderation of our passionate natures. But, as George Steiner has observed, the subject matter of tragedy places those emotions in a register beyond the ordinary. As fundamental human responses to extraordinary human suffering, they signal the “core of dynamic negativity” that underwrites authentic tragedy. Raising the problem of human pain and fragility in the face of circumstances potentially beyond human control, representations of human suffering have a metaphysical and, more particularly, theological dimension that has long provoked philosophical interest in the dynamics of tragic drama. In this course, we will examine the interface between philosophy and works of tragic drama as that interface pertains to the psychology and aesthetics of compassion. Looking to such writers as Plato, Aristotle, Seneca, Augustine, Dante, Shakespeare, Dostoevsky, Friedrich Nietzsche and Simone Weil, we will investigate the place of compassion in Western philosophy and theology and the roles that art and imagination have played in the stimulation of compassionate response. 



Dr. Rebekah Smick
ICS 120104 / 220104 F24
ICH5751HF L0101*
Remote (Online Synchronous)
Thursdays, 10:00am-1:00pm ET

(MWS, MA, PhD)

Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:

To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13, 2024. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.

*Attention TST students: if you are interested in taking this course for credit, you must petition your college of registration to count the course credit toward your degree program.

Religion, Life, and Society: Reformational Philosophy

An exploration of central issues in philosophy, as addressed by Herman Dooyeweerd, Dirk Vollenhoven, and the “Amsterdam School” of neoCalvinian thought. The course tests the relevance of this tradition for recent developments in Western philosophy. Special attention is given to critiques of foundationalism, metaphysics, and modernity within reformational philosophy and in other schools of thought.


ICS 1107AC / 2107AC F24
Remote (Online Synchronous)
Tuesdays, 2:00-5:00pm ET

(MWS, MA, PhD)


Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:

To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13, 2024. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations. 

4 April 2024

The Craft of Reflective Practice

We humans make sense of things by telling stories. In this course we will learn how to do critical reflective practice, primarily by telling stories about our everyday professional lives. We will zoom in on the story of an ordinary day at work, and then zoom out to the story of our career to date, zoom out further to the story of our work community, and zoom out even further to the overarching story of God’s world. In the process we will learn qualitative research skills, receive an introduction to phenomenology (the philosophical study of lived experience), develop our own approach to praxis (that is, the craft of morally-oriented, theoretically-informed, and theory-generating critically reflective practice), and, most significantly, come to terms with who we are in what we do.



Dr. Gideon Strauss
ICSD 132501 / 232501 F24*
Blended (Online Asynchronous/Synchronous)

(MA-EL, MWS)


Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:
To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is September 13 (Note that the first session for this course takes place on September 12). Maximum enrolment of twelve (12) students. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.


*Approved for Area 2 of the CSTC

3 April 2024

God of Solidarity: Liberation Theology as Social Movement

In the latter half of the 20th century, a wave of liberation movements swept across the globe as colonized and exploited people undertook seismic struggles for self-determination. These movements had a profound influence not only on global politics, but also on intellectual trends and the political left, for whom “the masses” took on new significance and previous orthodoxies seemed out of step with the times. Theology was no exception, and from the 1970s on Christian theology would not only reinterpret itself through the lens of liberation around the world, but would also become a primary organizing force in the struggle for liberation.

While liberation theology is often studied for its doctrinal content, it is irreducibly social, historical, and political, emerging from and accountable to people’s movements. As a result, liberation theology was also severely disciplined by ecclesial and political power brokers. In this class, we will consider liberation theology in historical perspective, specifically in its Latin American expressions, examining its relationship to a revolution in global Christianity and revolutions in various political contexts. We will also consider the papacy of Pope Francis, looking at the rehabilitation of several liberation theologians since 2013, with an eye toward the future and legacy of liberation theology in the 21st century.


Dean Dettloff

ICSD 132904 / 232904 S24

Remote (Online Synchronous)

Intensive, June 17 - July 24

Mondays & Wednesdays, 7pm - 9pm ET


(MWS, MA, PHD)


Syllabus


Enrolment Notes:

To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register is June 17, 2024. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.

*Attention TST students: if you are interested in taking this course for credit, you must petition your college of registration to count the course credit toward your degree program.

24 February 2024

State, Society, and Religion in Hegel’s Philosophy

 This course explores the interrelation of political, social, and religious life in the philosophy of G. W. F. Hegel. Readings will be drawn from Hegel’s lectures on art and religion, as well as his works Elements of the Philosophy of Right and Phenomenology of Spirit. We will explore the political and social conditions of human experience through the lens of what Hegel calls “objective spirit,” focusing in particular on how our freedom as self-conscious beings is enabled and supported by the domains of ethical life, law, and civil society. We will also explore Hegel’s account of the human engagement in “absolute spirit,” here attending to the distinctive practices of art and religion, and to how these practices are interwoven with social and political life. We will also consider Hegel’s role in the historical construction of the modern West’s category of religion, and on what is involved in thinking about religion and religious difference (and Hegel’s philosophy itself) beyond Eurocentrism.



ICS 153303 / 253303 S24
Intensive, May 7 - June 20, 2024
Remote (Online Synchronous)
Tuesdays & Thursdays, 1 pm - 3 pm ET

(MWS, MA, PhD)




Enrolment Notes:
To register for this course, email academic-registrar@icscanada.edu. Last date to register May 3, 2024. Maximum enrolment of twelve (12) students. ICS reserves the right to decline registrations.


*Attention TST students: if you are interested in taking this course for credit, you must petition your college of registration to count the course credit toward your degree program.