Interim Department Chair: Gregory M. Oakes, Ph.D.

The Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Winthrop University strives to offer excellent undergraduate instruction, to conduct first-rate scholarly research, and to perform dedicated service to the college, university, community, and academic profession. The study of philosophy is devoted to knowledge and reason as such. How do we process our knowledge, think critically, and make decisions? Philosophical thinking is not simply training in a field; it is the refinement of a worldview. The academic study of religion, understanding spirituality, religious thought, literature, and practice as powerful cultural forces in our world, is as important as ever. Engaging the questions and topics of Religious Studies is a vital part of that effort to understand how people process, document, and give meaning to the human experience. Thus, the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies not only holds a commitment to the liberal arts tradition, but also bears the task of thinking about the very nature of that tradition and the way it continues to take shape in the emerging world of new technologies, new divisions of intellectual labor, and new ways of organizing knowledge.