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Meet Your Peer Advisor: Alaiah Faris

We have a fantastic and unique cohort of majors whose interests and perspectives are varied as they are deep. Who are our students?  What drew them to major in Religious Studies? What are their specific interests in the field and motivations to delve deeper into exploring them? If you are considering declaring and have some of these questions, reach out to our peer advisor, Alaiah Faris!
 
 

Why did you choose to major in Religious Studies; what's unique about this program?
I think Religious Studies is one of the most interdisciplinary programs there is-- you are able to study history, culture, linguistics, sociology, philosophy, and a whole host of other fields. There's no one way to study religion, and so you get to have fun and explore in a way that might be more restricted in other programs.
 

What is your favorite class in Religious Studies and why?
I really enjoyed the course "Milk and Honey, Wine and Blood: Food, Justice, and Ethnic Identity in Jewish Culture". It was taught by two of my favorite professors here, it discusses ideas of culture and food, and we got to eat! It was a great class for me, since my focus is on Judaism, and I've taken several courses on food here so it fit well into my previous coursework.
 

What is your senior essay or honors thesis about?
My honors thesis is on Yiddish as a tool for expressing queer Jewish identity. I'm looking at the history of Yiddish, its development following the 1940s, and how Yiddish is spoken today, all in relation to ideas of gender and queer identity.
 

Any plans with the degree?
At the moment, my plan is to take a year off to travel a bit and get a break from school for a while. After that, I'd like to go to grad school. I'm considering going into academia, but what I'd really love to do is teach; I'm considering getting a master's in education.
 

Graduation Year2020
 

Email: ajfaris@stanford.edu