"A recent surge in interest in magic and the occult inside and outside academia lies at the heart of the most urgent questions of our society," Professor Emily Selove, who will run the new course, said in a post on the university's blog. "Decolonization, the exploration of alternative epistemologies, feminism and anti-racism are at the core of this program."
Selove said in a news release that the program "will allow people to reexamine the assumption that the west is the place of rationalism and science, while the rest of the world is a place of magic and superstition."
The master's program will be housed at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, which Selove said acknowledges "the profound debt of western culture and science to the Arabo-Islamic world, a history that has been erased in creating our false picture of the west as uniquely rational."
Modules offered to students in the program include dragons in western literature and art, the legend of King Arthur, paleography, Islamic thought, archaeological theory and practice, the depiction of women in the Middle Ages and the philosophy of psychedelics.