Faculty Profile

E. Allen Richardson, Ph.D
Author of Stranger in This Land, explores the challenge of growing religious diversity.

Read his story »

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Cedar Crest?
  • Personalized attention
  • Average class size <20
  • Women's leadership opportunities
  • Flexibility to add dual major, minor

Religious studies prepares students to live and understand a world influences by four major religions—Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and Christianity.


E. Allen Richardson, Ph.D.
Professor, Religious Studies
610-437-4471 ext. 3320

Experience the Temples of Tamil Nadu Spring 2015

Students interested in study abroad will have the unique opportunity to travel to India and tour the South Indian Hindu temples in spring 2015, with Cedar Crest Professor of Global Studies E. Allen Richardson, Ph.D. For ten days students will tour these ancient temples within the cities of Tamil Nadu, including Chennai, Pondicherry, Kumbakonam, Trichy, Madurai, and Thanjavur.

There will also be visits to many historical sites such as the Shore Temple at Mahabalipuram, constructed in 700 C.E., and the ancient pilgrimage city of Kanchipuram. Students will even see lingering French Colonial Culture in Pondicherry.

Students will also have the opportunity to shop in ancient silk markets, see ornate palaces, and take an evening riksha ride to a temple with abundant shrines and carved gateways. Then they will visit the over 2,000 year old Thirumohur temple.

“Going to India is a life changing experience,” said Richardson, who’s taken students to India on three separate occasions. “The trip enables them to step out of the fast paced secular environment of the Mid-Atlantic States and to enter an ancient culture whose origins have emphasized religion.”

Richardson said that students will have the opportunity to visit classical Hindu temples, see Hindu art, and observe patterns of devotion that have been maintained for millennia. In addition, students will experience native architecture, observe rituals that are uniquely Indian and also gain a greater understanding of life in the developing world.

Richardson said that he and his students carry these experiences with them long after they return home. “For most of us who have participated in trips like this, life in the United States never again looks the same,” said Richardson

For more information contact E. Allen Richardson, Ph.D. at Arichard@cedarcrest.edu