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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Subject
Date Range
2010 2019


Religions, following Max Müller, have often been seen by scholars in religious studies as uniform collections of beliefs and practices encoded in stable “sacred books” that direct the conduct of religious actors. These texts were the chief focus of academic students of religion through much of the 20th century, and this approach remains strong in the 21st. However, a growing chorus of dissidents has begun to focus on the lived experience of practitioners and the material objects that structure that experience, and some textual scholars have begun extending this materialist framework to the study of texts. This dissertation is a …

Contributors
Swanger, Timothy Charles, Bokenkamp, Stephen R, Campany, Robert, et al.
Created Date
2019

Since its modern renaissance in the mid-1970s, the Messianic Jewish movement in America has grown from a handful of house churches to a network of hundreds of synagogues and congregations. Mainline American Judaism has unanimously rejected the argument that Jews who believe in Jesus continue to be members of the Jewish community or that their religion is a form of contemporary Judaism. Scholars have accounted for Messianic Judaism as a new religious movement but no consensus has formed on whether to classify Messianic Jewish religion as a sectarian form of Protestant Christianity or American Judaism. This dissertation uses a polythetic …

Contributors
Power, Patricia, Gereboff, Joel D, Clay, Eugene, et al.
Created Date
2015

Ambivalent Blood examines the unsettled status of religious language in the semiotic construction of HIV/AIDS in America. Since public discourse about HIV/AIDS began in 1981, a variety of religious grammars have been formulated, often at cross-purposes, to assign meaning to the epidemic. The disease's complex interaction with religion has been used to prophesize looming apocalypses, both religious and national, demand greater moral solicitude among the citizenry, forge political advantage within America's partisan political landscape, mobilize empathy and compassion for those stricken by the disease, and construct existential meaning for those who have already been consigned to physical and social death. …

Contributors
Cleworth, Brandon, Fessenden, Tracy, Cady, Linell, et al.
Created Date
2012

Many of the works of Dominick Argento have been researched and analyzed, but his choral work Evensong: Of Love and Angels s has received limited attention thus far. Written in memoriam for his wife Carolyn Bailey Argento, Evensong draws its musical material from her initials C.B.A. These letters, translated into note names, form a conspicuous head motive that is present in each movement of the work, and it serves multiple functions: as a melodic feature, as the foundation for a twelve-tone row, and as a harmonic base. This paper provides an overview of the work's conception with specific relation to …

Contributors
Page, Carrie Leigh, Rogers, Rodney, Demars, James, et al.
Created Date
2011

La Santa Muerte is a folk saint depicted as a female Grim Reaper in Mexico and the Southwestern United States. The Grim Reaper, as an iconic representation of death, was derived from the Angel of Death found in pseudepigrapha and apocalyptic writings of Jewish and early Christian writers. The Angel of Death arose from images and practices in pre-Christian Europe and throughout the Mediterranean region. Images taken from Revelation were used to console the survivors of the Black Death in Western Europe and produced a material culture that taught the Christian notion of dying well. The combination of the scythe …

Contributors
Breault, Eric Bruce, Astor-Aguilera, Miguel A, Gereboff, Joel, et al.
Created Date
2014

This dissertation explores the various online radicalization and recruitment practices of groups like al-Qaeda and Hezbollah, as well as Salafi Jihadists in general. I will also outline the inadequacies of the federal government's engagement with terrorist / Islamist ideologies and explore the ways in which early 20th century foundational Islamist theorists like Hasan al-Banna, Sayyid Qutb, and Abul ala Mawdudi have affected contemporary extremist Islamist groups, while exploring this myth of the ideal caliphate which persists in the ideology of contemporary extremist Islamist groups. In a larger sense, I am arguing that exploitation of the internet (particularly social networking platforms) …

Contributors
Salihu, Flurije, Ali, Souad T, Miller, Keith, et al.
Created Date
2014

Wu Yun (d. 778) was prominent poet at the Tang court. His biography of the Daoist ritualist Lu Xiujing (406-77) can be read on several levels. It functions as a source of information on Lu's life and works, but a reading focused on this alone is insufficient. Conventions of Chinese biography dictate the text is read not just with an eye towards who Lu "really was," but also how he functions as a character fashioned by an author for certain purposes. With this in mind, the reader can learn not just about Lu, but about the audience of the text …

Contributors
Swanger, Timothy Charles, Bokenkamp, Stephen R., Aguilera, Miguel A., et al.
Created Date
2012

This dissertation is positioned at the intersection of philosophy, theology, and critical theory in order to explore the way early modern literature may be enlisted as a vehicle for a return to an ethically informed humanism, specifically with regard to how Western culture currently understands the contingent categories of "life" and "the human." While a great deal of critical work is currently being marshaled in the field of biopolitics, scholarly focus continues to be placed on the materiality of the physical body, or what I term "biopolitical materialism." What remains underexplored, however, is the reality that "life" and "the human" …

Contributors
Noschka, Michael Joseph, Hawkes, David, Thompson, Ayanna, et al.
Created Date
2014

This dissertation aims to explore the diverse ways in which piety is conceptualized and cultivated by highly-educated Muslim women in Turkey. These women hold active positions within the secular-public sphere while trying to keep their aim of becoming pious in their own way, in relation to their subjective understanding of piety. After a detailed analysis of the formation of the secular modern public sphere in Turkey, in relation to the questions of modernity, nation-building, secularism, Islamism, and the gender relations, it gives an account of the individual routes taken by the highly educated professional women to particular aspirations of piety. …

Contributors
Topal, Semiha, Talebi, Shahla, Cady, Linell, et al.
Created Date
2012

The organ in the Catholic Church of the United States is a mirror of its time, reflecting the various challenges facing Catholic liturgy today. In some cases, it reflects the rich patrimony of European immigrants, anxious to replicate the liturgical conditions they left behind. In others, it reflects the efforts of liturgical reformers to "update" the liturgy, creating more opportunities for what they understand to be active participation of the faithful. The absence of the organ in some American Catholic churches, particularly, in the time following the liturgical reforms of Vatican II, raises questions on the direction of sacred music …

Contributors
Hart, Skye Matthew, Marshall, Kimberly A., Koonce, Frank W., et al.
Created Date
2010

This study analyzes competing forms of Protestant Christianity within the Bible Belt of the Upper South (Kentucky, Tennessee, and North Carolina). On one hand, a conservative “culture war” version of Christianity has dominated the South, and deeply influenced national politics, for almost fifty years. This form of Christianity is predicated on white supremacy and heteropatriarchy and regulates religious, as well as sexual, gender, and racial norms. On the other hand, an emerging movement of those once socialized in the culture war version of Protestantism is now reconfiguring the regional traditions. Through ethnographic fieldwork, qualitative interviews, and historical analysis, this study …

Contributors
Shoemaker, Terry D., Cady, Linell, Gereboff, Joel, et al.
Created Date
2018

A poster advertising two 1966 performances of Duke Ellington’s First Sacred Concert at Trinity Cathedral catalyzed research into several storylines that stem from the jazz great’s time in Phoenix, Arizona. Ellington’s arrival on the weekend of November 10th, 1966, was surrounded by controversy within Trinity Cathedral, the Diocese of Arizona, and the diocesan relationship to the national Episcopal Church. Because Phoenix had recently passed civil rights legislation, race relations remained on unstable footing when Ellington’s sacred jazz music—performed by Ellington’s black band members—filled the nave of the historic cathedral. This concert stimulated research into Duke Ellington’s connection to the Episcopal …

Contributors
Downey, Ryan, FitzPatrick, Carole, Norton, Kay, et al.
Created Date
2017

This dissertation project addresses one of the most critical problems in the study of religion: how new formations of religion are constructed and constituted. My work builds on the recent revisions of the secularization theory, which demonstrates the alternative and hybrid ways people seek out religion in modernity. To this end, my project examines the emerging popularity and phenomenon of international meditation centers in Thailand, focusing on encounters between international meditation center teachers and their international students. Through participant observation and in-depth interviews at these sites throughout Thailand, my project explores the social processes of religious change and adaptation, and …

Contributors
Schedneck, Brooke, Schober, Juliane, Rush, James, et al.
Created Date
2012

Conversion to Judaism has a long history, and changes in Jewish law for converts over the centuries have reflected changes in the relationship between the Jewish community and the larger societies within which Jews have lived. As American Jews now live in the most open society they have encountered, a split is developing between Orthodox and liberal Jewish rabbinic authorities in how they deal with potential converts. This split is evident in books written to advice potential converts and in conversion narratives by people who have converted to Judaism. For this project over 30 people who were in the process …

Contributors
Cohen, Mariam, Gereboff, Joel, Woodward, Mark, et al.
Created Date
2013

This study examines how a populist religious leader, Alexander Campbell, altered the economic value system of religious material production in the early United States and, subsequently, the long-term value structure of religious economic systems generally. As religious publishing societies in the early nineteenth century were pioneering the not-for-profit corporation and as many popular itinerants manufactured religious spectacles around the country, Campbell combined the promotional methods of revivalism and the business practices of religious printers, with a conspicuously pugilistic tone to simultaneously build religious and business empires. He was a religious entrepreneur who capitalized on the opportunities of American revivalism for …

Contributors
Dupey, James Daniel, O'Donnell, Catherine, Critchlow, Donald, et al.
Created Date
2018

The purpose of this study was to create a brief strength of religious/nonreligious worldview scale that has language inclusive for nontheistic populations. An exploratory factor analysis was conducted using 207 participants from a major public southwestern university and a public midwestern university in the United States. It was determined that the Strength of Worldview Scale (SOWS) is a single-factor measure, which also demonstrated high test-retest reliability. It was hypothesized that scores on the SOWS would be negatively correlated with the Depression, Stress, and Anxiety Scale (DASS), positively correlated with the Purpose in Life Subscale, and not correlated with the Extraversion …

Contributors
Robele, Joseph, Kinnier, Richard, Kemer, Gulsah, et al.
Created Date
2015

This thesis is an ethnographic account of the religious practices of the Ammatoa, a Konjo-speaking community of approximately 4600 people living in the southeast uplands of South Sulawesi, Indonesia. It examines aspects of Ammatoan rituals, cosmology, culture, economy, and politics that, from their point of view, are also considered religious. For the purpose of this dissertation, I understand religion to be ways of relationship between human beings and their fellow humans: the living and the dead, other beings, such as animals, plants, forests, mountains, rivers, and invisible entities such as gods and spirits. This conception of religion provides a better …

Contributors
Maarif, Samsul, Duncan, Christopher, Gallab, Abdullahi, et al.
Created Date
2012

This study investigates the presence of a dual identity defendant, and how sharing an in-group can create a judgment bias. A sample of 256 participants was used to test whether there was a relationship between judgment punitiveness, perceptions of shared identity, hypocrisy and the social identities (religion and sexual orientation) of the participants and a defendant charges with a sexual offence. Results suggest that Christian participants selected more punitive outcomes for the defendant compared to non-Christian participants. Further, participants were more punitive when the defendant was gay compared to when the defendant was heterosexual. Also, when the defendant was straight …

Contributors
Altholz, Rachel Leah, Salerno, Jessica, Hall, Deborah, et al.
Created Date
2014

From 1973 to 1984 the people of Uruguay lived under a repressive military dictatorship. During that time, the Uruguayan government violated the Human Rights of its opponents and critics through prolonged imprisonment in inhumane conditions without trial, physical and psychological torture, disappearance, and a negation of freedom of speech, thought and congregation. In this project, I argue that these violations of Human Rights committed by the military dictatorship added urgency to the rethinking by religious individuals of the Uruguayan model of secularism, the laïcité, and the role that their theology required them to play in the "secular" world. Influenced by …

Contributors
Cash, Lucia, Cady, Linell, Duncan, Christopher, et al.
Created Date
2015

People may conceptualize God as benevolent and as authoritarian. This research investigates the influence of these God-concepts on prosocial behavior; specifically whether such concepts differentially predict a set of beliefs about the self and the world, volunteer motivations, and intentions to volunteer for secular causes. Two studies, one correlation and one experimental, were conducted among college students who were Christians and indicated they believe that God exists. A measurement model of the concepts of Benevolent and Authoritarian God was first tested, and a conceptual path model was then analyzed. I found that concepts of a benevolent God were associated with …

Contributors
Johnson, Kathryn A., Cohen, Adam B., Okun, Morris A., et al.
Created Date
2012