US university offers class in Bruce Springsteen theology

Rutgers University's semester-long course will focus on the biblical reference in the singer's work

US university offers class in Bruce Springsteen theology

Photo: PA

A US university is offering a theology class on Bruce Springsteen.

Rutgers University in New Jersey is offering student the chance to take a semester-long class looking at the biblical references in The Boss' lyrics – from his 1973 debut 'Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J.' to his 2012 album 'The Wrecking Ball'.

According to Time, Azzan Yadin-Israel, a Jewish studies and classics specialist, said in a news release: "Interestingly, Springsteen refers more often to the stories of the Hebrew Bible (the Old Testament) than the New Testament. On a literary level, Springsteen often recasts biblical figures and stories into the American landscape."

He continues, "The narrator of 'Adam Raised a Cain' describes his strained relationship with his father through the prism of the biblical story of the first father and son; apocalyptic storms accompany a boy’s tortured transition into manhood in 'The Promised Land', and the first responders of 9/11 rise up to “someplace higher” in the flames, much as Elijah the prophet ascended in a chariot of fire ('Into the Fire')."

As Time points out, Rutgers is not the first US university to bring The Boss into the realms of academia. Princeton University has a sociology course on Bruce Springsteen's America, while Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey has hosted symposiums on the rock star’s legacy. Meanwhile, the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York offered a history course on the musician.

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