MID-ATLANTIC REGION

AMERICAN ACADEMY OF RELIGION & SOCIETY OF BIBLICAL LITERATURE

Mid-Atlantic Region of the American Academy of Religion (MAR-AAR)

Call for Papers 2018

 

2018 MAR-AAR Meeting

Dates: March 15-16, 2018

MAR-AAR-SBL Undergraduate Symposium: March 14, 2018

 

Location: Hyatt Regency, New Brunswick, NJ

2 Albany St, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

Proposal Deadline: Extended to December 30, 2017

Lodging and Registration coming soon: December 2017

 

MAR-AAR Executive Board

President – Christopher Fici, Ph.D candidate

Vice President/President Elect – Gerald S. Vigna, Ph.D

Regional Coordinator – Sabrina D. MisirHiralall, Ed.D

Graduate Student Representative – Tekoa Robinson, Lancaster Theological Seminary, M.Div candidate

Conference Theme: Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar

The 2018 annual conference theme of the Mid-Atlantic Region of the American Academy of Religion (MAR-AAR) builds on the 2017 conference theme, The Future of Religious and Theological Studies: What Is Our Responsibility as Public Intellectuals?  During the 2017 conference, we explored key questions as to how public intellectuals construct knowledge in religious and theological scholarship, along with specific questions as to whether the infrastructure of higher education has a responsibility to endorse public intellectualism despite the “business model” that many campuses engage in. We featured a special session with the Religion and Education Collaborative, with neighbor scholars from the New England-Maritimes Region of the American Academy of Religion (NEM-AAR), which explored teacher education, literacy, theology, religious studies, law and the relevance of this work to current social and political issues.

We also launched two new initiatives for our region. First, the MAR-AAR Women’s Caucus, aims to create a progressive, creative space for the support and growth of women’s religious/theological scholarship in our region and beyond. Our regional Women’s Caucus began with a dynamic presentation from Boston University scholar Kate Common entitled FORGiNG VOICE: Filmmaking and Feminist and Womanist Theologies. Inspired by the national AAR Women’s Caucus, our regional Women’s Caucus is developing into an ongoing project that is open to all regional members who want to participate in and support women’s scholarship.

Second, 2017 was the first year of our Undergraduate Symposium. The Symposium theme was How Can Undergraduates Transform the Public Sphere as Public Intellectuals? Undergraduates thought about how their scholarship is and can be transformative for the public sphere to create a more just society. We envision our model of the Undergraduate Symposium as an example for our national AAR community that will help undergraduates connect with one another as they become a part of AAR or SBL. Hopefully they will continue to be a part of AAR or SBL throughout their respective graduate studies.

With the 2017 conference theme as a point of departure, the 2018 conference theme aims to deepen our dialogue, as we continue not only to explore our position as religious and theological scholars in the public sphere but also think about how our vocational vision and calling responds to a planetary age of crossroads and crisis.

In numerous intersecting contexts and circumstances, we find ourselves in a crossroads age. The question of social sustainability, including and especially economic and ecologic sustainability, leave us with a feeling of tremendous uncertainty but also tremendous opportunity to shape, forge, and form a sense of collective existence better rooted in justice, equity, community, and compassion. How do we participate in anticipating the way forward into a new planetary age through our scholarship?

Are we called, as religious and theological scholars, to practice prophetic pragmatism? Cornel West describes prophetic pragmatism as a response to the wicked challenges of our day and age, which calls us to shape our work with and through “tragic action with revolutionary intent, usually reformist consequences, and always visionary outlook.” How do we understand our scholarly vocation, personally and collectively, in a visionary, anticipatory sense in planetary circumstances, which will not allow us to be hermetically sealed from each other? How does our vocation also allow us to anticipate and create sustainable and creative models of academic community, which resists counterproductive specialization and commodification?

Sections of the MAR-AAR will address the conference theme based on scholarship within their discipline. We invite all graduate and undergraduate scholars in our region, as well as our neighbor scholars from around the country and around the world, to participate in our conference. We welcome, and especially encourage, opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration as we think about our individual and collective role as anticipatory scholars in a crossroads age.

Plenary Address Speaker

Laurel Kearns, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Sociology and Religion and Environmental Studies, Drew Theological School and the Graduate Division of Religion of Drew University.

Dr. Kearns has researched, published, and given talks around the globe on religion and environmentalism for over 20 years. In addition to helping found the Green Seminary Initiative, she has been a board member of GreenFaith since 1995, and serves on the Sustainability Committees of both Drew University and the American Academy of Religion. Her teaching interests include the interplay of religion(s) in social change and social movements, particularly those addressing issues of racism, sexism, sexuality, sustainability, globalization, disability, peace and environmental issues; the religious landscape of the U.S., with particular interest in the religious expressions of women, new immigrant groups and attitudes toward nature; feminist and environmental sociology; and religion and ecology, with a particular interest in eco-justice and environmental racism.

Proposal Submission

Submissions, unless otherwise stated in a modified Section’s Call for Papers below, should include the following information:

  • Name

  • Institutional Affiliation

  •  E-mail Address

  • 150-word Abstract

  • 500-word Proposal

Please review the various sections accepting proposal guidelines below. Submit by e-mail attachment to the Chair and Co-Chairs identified in the section to which you are submitting. Members may only submit one proposal to a section and two proposals overall. The submission deadline is December 30, 2017.  You will receive notification regarding the status of your proposal by January 15, 2018. If you have questions about which section to submit to or need additional information about submitting a proposal, please contact the MAR-AAR Vice President/President-Elect, Gerald S. Vigna, Ph.D., jerry.vigna@alvernia.edu.

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Undergraduate Section

This section offers current undergraduates the opportunity to present recent work or work in progress in the field of religious studies or theology. Especially encouraged are submissions that relate closely to this year’s conference theme on Religion and Scholarship in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar. The MAR-AAR Undergraduate Section seeks paper presentations that address how religion, and scholars/students of religion, address current, real world situations. We are especially interested in interdisciplinary approaches to this topic. 

Papers should maintain a focus on why the study of religion or theology is valuable in the public and/or private sphere. Conferences are a crucial part of graduate life in academia. Thus, MAR-AAR urges all undergraduates interested in graduate school or seminary to submit to this section. Undergraduates will have the chance to meet graduate students and seasoned religious studies and theology professors who will offer substantial feedback to help undergraduates move forward in academia.

Submissions should include the following information:

  • Name

  • Undergraduate Institution

  • Advisor (or a professor whom you see as a mentor)

  • E-mail Address

  • 250-word abstract

Submit proposals to:

Kim Paffenroth (Chair), Iona College, kimpaffenroth@msn.com.

Andrew Henry (Co-Chair), Boston University, religionforbreakfast@gmail.com.

Bradley Herling (Co-Chair), Marymount Manhattan College, bherling@mmm.edu

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Women’s Caucus

The Women’s Caucus seeks to conduct two sessions:

Session One: Moving Forward: Prophetic Conversations Among Deans and Chairpersons

This session of the Women’s Caucus Wildcard will bring together panelists comprising deans and chairpersons of departments of religion and theology from various universities, and seminaries. Panelists to this section are encouraged to reflect on the responsibilities of scholars of religions and theologians as public intellectuals in light of 21st century challenges. Additionally, panelists are exhorted to speak prophetically as they anticipate these challenges and offer pathways in stewarding sustainable transformations and authentic relationships while individuals remain passionate about vocational vision and calling.

This session features not only an interreligious and inter-institutional participation, but also hopes to foster an intergenerational dialogue. Thus, the session is intentionally designed to give more time for discussion, not only among panelists, but also with the audience. Come participate and join in this exciting conversation as scholars in top leadership positions engage in deepening, expanding, and re-envisioning our role as public intellectuals.  Ask questions, provide immediate feedback, and provide your own brief reflections in expanding and re-envisioning our role as public intellectuals while facing the ever-increasing challenges of post-modernity.

Session Two: Emerging Scholars' Views and Their Response to Prophetic Conversations Among Deans.

This session seeks proposals from younger scholars involved in leadership or service positions as a complement to the panel. They are to present their own work towards deepening, expanding, and re-envisioning our role as public intellectuals as well as present their responses from the earlier session: Moving Forward: Prophetic Conversations Among Deans, Chairs and Top Level Management Scholars.

Please provide the following information with your proposal:

  • Name

  • Institutional Affiliation

  •  E-mail Address

  • Individual paper title

  • 150-word Abstract

  • 500-word Proposal

  • Please label the attachment with your name and session you are applying.

  • Email subject line must read: 2018 Paper Proposal - Session & name: Paper Title

PRESENTATION REQUIREMENTS

  • All presenters must be AAR members and pre-registered for the conference by the registration deadline.

  • Presentations will be 10 minutes in length.

  • Notice of acceptance/rejection will be sent out by January 15, 2018.

Send proposals to:

Alicia Panganiban (Chair). Princeton Theological Seminary, aliciabp@gmail.com.

Julia Berger (Co-Chair), University of Kent, juliamberger@gmail.com

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Asian Religions

This section invites proposals on the pioneering, creative, and often revolutionary role of religion in dealing with, and offering solutions to, various global challenges, including migrant crisis, economic/political injustice, and environmental problems. We are interested in presentations that address, through Asian religious perspectives, a variety of issues and questions concerning the role of religion and/or religious figures as a positive, innovative force for social change in both public discourse and socio-political process. We are also interested in how Asian religious perspectives were used to challenge colonialism, breakdown of traditional political and administrative systems, loss of identity, evangelism, and modernizing narratives. Discussions on the utilization of religious narrative or philosophy as ideological drive, such as found in Mahatma Gandhi’s satyagraha/ahimsa movement and Taixu’s humanistic Buddhism, are welcomed. We also welcome proposal ideas that extend beyond these themes, if they are under the general focus of this section.

Submit proposals to:

Song-Chong Lee (Chair), The University of Findlay, lee@findlay.edu

Hyun Choo, PhD (Co-Chair), SUNY Stony Brook, bhyun.choo@stonybrook.edu.

Vishwa Adluri (Co-Chair), Hunter College, vadluri@hunter.cuny.edu

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Christian History and Theology

This Section invites proposals relating to this year’s regional conference theme of Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar. The Call for Papers invites many different applications in the study of Christian history and theology. Proposals may address the conference theme in a variety of ways. We welcome a variety of approaches—including focused historical study, critical textual analysis, and constructive theology. Interdisciplinary projects drawing on anthropology, psychology, sociology, philosophy, or other fields are encouraged. Paper proposals on other topics relating to Christian history and theology are also encouraged.

Submit proposals to:

Sergey Trostyanskiy (Chair), Union Theological Seminary, st2399@utsnyc.edu.

Jason Wyman (Co-Chair), Union Theological Seminary, wyman.jason@gmail.com.

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Comparative Religion and Ecology

The Comparative Religion and Ecology section constructively explores contemporary ecological and Earth-focused issues from the perspectives of different religious traditions through a postcolonial interreligious lens. Comparing spiritual and religious views of the ecosystem, its meaning, and its relation to human beings, this section is self-consciously interreligious as well as interdisciplinary. 

This year's theme also compels us to call for submissions which specifically explore the civilizational crossroads moment presented by the age of climate crisis. How does our work as ecologically conscious scholars contribute to the anticipation of Earth-honoring and ecologically just pathways and responses to the reality of climate crisis?

This section focuses on the challenge of rethinking religions in relation to a just and sustainable society by exploring the current issues concerning the intersection of science, religion, and ecology, such as climate change, alternative energy and fossil fuels, food production and GMOs, and related issues. We are particularly interested in proposals that are related to one of the following themes: 1) dealing with an ecological issue(s) in interreligious dialogue(s); 2) proposing planetary ethic(s) in East-West dialogue(s); focusing on postcolonial/neocolonial/colonial relations between humans and our ecosystem in relation to religions and theologies. We encourage submissions by scholars of all religious traditions and multiple disciplines and perspectives.

Submit proposals to:

Jea Sophia Oh (Chair), West Chester University of Pennsylvania, sophiajs5@gmail.com.

Christopher Fici (Co-Chair), Union Theological Seminary, clf2138@utsnyc.edu.

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Contemporary Theology

This section invites proposals for scholars reflecting on systematic, philosophical, or moral theology in the contemporary context, loosely defined as the nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first centuries. This year's theme, Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar, presents a number of interesting questions that can be explored in our section. Especially welcome are any papers with an emphasis on the intersection between religious/theological education and the question of ecological and economic sustainability, the role of ecumenism in the midst of our planetary circumstance, fostering more ecologically-conscious understandings of liturgy and worship,  methodological or hermeneutical approaches to religious practices, theological reflection on scholarly aims and ideals in a global context, creating models of academic community to resist the negative effects of commodification and specialization, or other cross-disciplinary conversations. Explicitly focusing on the conference theme will without question bolster one's candidacy in the submission process, but any outstanding pieces subsumed under the section's general aegis are always considered for acceptance. Group presentations or panels are particularly encouraged. The selection committee will make decisions in mid-January.

Submit proposals to:

Rory Misiewicz (Chair), Princeton Theological Seminary rory.misiewicz@ptsem.edu.

Lucas Briola (Co-Chair), Catholic University of America 66briola@cua.edu.

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Continental Philosophy

The call to action characteristic of political philosophy is a unique feature in the philosophical tradition, for unlike other fields of philosophy, which seek to uncover fundamental truths regarding nature, human experience, and humanity’s place in the world, the essential aim of political philosophy is not merely to analyze a certain political and/or social state of affairs, but to establish a coherent vision of a just society and the proper path for best realizing such a society. At a time when political discourse has become increasingly distinguished by ideological polarization, disinformation, and hostility, such a vision is necessary perhaps more than ever. Yet insofar as one cannot develop or articulate a coherent vision of a just society without philosophical analysis, such analysis is all the more imperative toward that end. Any political scholarship which identifies a political or social objective without establishing the fundamental ground of its values is able neither to articulate nor to defend its vision. Therefore, we are accepting submissions that address the conference theme of the social role of scholars of religion and theology, respective to the tradition of Continental Philosophy. Specifically, we seek to explore the tension between encouraging political action and developing sound political theory, and whether or not these pragmatic and theoretical aims are at odds.

Submit proposals to:

Sean Skedzielewski (Chair), Rowan University, skedzielewski@rowan.edu.

Sean D’Alessio (Co-Chair), Independent Scholar, sdpgh@protonmail.edu.

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Global Religion and Pluralism

The Global Religion and Pluralism Section seeks papers that comment on interreligious pedagogies and practices which focus on religious pluralism, especially within the context of tisyear’s theme, Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar. Based on the conference’s focus on public intellectualism and the religion scholar’s anticipatory role going forward in a pluralistic world, this section particularly invites submissions that consider diverse experiences in the lives of practitioners or those influenced by religion, including experiences of race, ethnicity, religion, diversity, and culture. We are especially interested in interdisciplinary research.

Submit proposals to:

Amy Weiss (Chair), College of Saint Elizabeth, amyweiss@nyu.edu.

Linh Hoang (Co-Chair), Siena College, lhoang@siena.edu.

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Interreligious and Interfaith Studies

This section invites proposals that rigorously discuss any aspect of interreligious and interfaith engagement. To establish the contours of this emerging field, we intend to cover a broader spectrum of the field. In particular, responding to the 2018 regional conference theme of Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar, this section encourages proposals that discuss how scholarly vision and vocation in Interreligious and Interfaith dialogue in the public sphere respond to a planetary age of crossroads and crisis. 

Submit proposals to:

Heon Kim (Chair), East Stroudsburg University, heonkim@po-box.esu.edu

Joyce Konigsburg (Co-Chair), Notre Dame of Maryland University, konigsburgj@duquesne.edu

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Philosophy of Religion

This section invites proposals that explore the conference theme on Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar. Scholars are encouraged to engage topics in the field of the philosophy of religion by building a bridge from scholarly and pedagogical strategies to the public sphere. Topics include (but are not limited to) the nature of religion, belief, ultimate reality, the soul, as well as faith and reason, proofs for the existence of God, the problem of evil, and religious plurality. Critically examining these topics opens up a space to objectively question and evaluate subjective beliefs, while beginning to understand and value the various belief systems of others, even when it comes into conflict with one’s own. This section aims to examine how to keep these topics relevant in an increasingly connected and often clashing global society that ranges from fervently religious to nonreligious. With the conference theme in mind, proposals might address the following questions:

  • What is the future of the philosophy of religion? How can scholarship on the metaphysical and epistemological complexities concerning matters of the divine leave a positive impact on the public?

  • How can instructors connect their student body to the local community as public intellectuals? How can scholars connect to a broader audience, especially audiences that are keen to discuss matter of the divine but may not have scholarly tools at their disposal?

  • What are more inclusive and balanced approaches to examining and explaining religious difference?

Submit proposals to:

Matthew Tennant (Chair), L'Université Chrétienne du Nord d'Haiti, matthew.tennant@regents.oxon.org.

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Postcolonial and Religious Studies

The Postcolonial and Religious Studies Section aims to focus sessions on the main conference theme, Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar.  This theme draws our attention to our responsibilities as scholars in a planetary age, facing questions of economic and ecological sustainability.  As postcolonial scholars, might we identify heretofore marginalized voices that could play a role in finding solutions to contemporary global issues?  Is there ecological wisdom, for example, in the beliefs and practices of postcolonial communities that could possibly be applied to addressing the environmental crisis?  Are there alternative ways of organizing natural and human resources that could lead to a more just and sustainable economic system?  We invite papers addressed in various creative ways to any of these topics or questions.

Submit proposals to:

Jeffery D. Long (Chair), Elizabethtown College, longjd@etown.edu.

Robert L. Ames (Co-Chair), Harvard University, rames@mail.harvard.edu.

David Dillard-Wright, University of South Carolina Aiken, writepage@gmail.com.

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Psychology and Religion

The theme of the 2018 annual conference of the Mid-Atlantic Region of the American Academy of Religion (MAR-AAR) continues the focus of last year’s conference (our responsibility as public intellectuals), extending our focus in the public sphere to global crises as “anticipatory scholars.”  Based upon the general rubric of the conference, the section welcomes proposals dealing with the relationship between collective consciousness and human behavior, and sustainability in the social and ecological sphere.  What is the link between psychology, religion, and sustainability? What does the psychological approach to religion offer in an increasingly “global” community dealing with critical social and ecological issues?  We are interested also in papers that offer psychological perspectives on any aspect of the juxtaposition and integration of psychology and religion, for example, what does the term ‘other’ mean in psychological and religious terms, and what is its impact on international and interreligious dialogue? How can the psychology of religion serve as a bridge between the secular and religious?  In addition, we welcome proposals for papers that address religious texts, themes, figures, and/or readers using the concepts and interpretive tools of any field of psychology in relation to religion.

Submit proposals to:

Brigid Burke, D.Litt. (Chair), Montclair State University, burkeb@montclair.edu.

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Religion and Education

This section invites proposals that respond to this year’s regional conference theme: Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar. Educators, with the responsibility of guiding and forming students for their future role as citizens, are by necessity anticipatory scholars. How can the academic study of religion in K-12 public schools prepare students to be compassionate leaders in a religiously diverse society rife with tension and conflict? What are the implications of the current political terrain in the US and globally, for the teaching of religion at the undergraduate and graduate levels? How do religious scholars continue to understand their scholarly vocation and role as educators and their responsibility to create common ground among disparate groups?  How can confessional religious education in faith communities encourage the realization of communities rooted in justice and equity and nurture connections across differences?

Proposals might address the following themes:

  • Diverse religious identities in public schools

  • Teaching about religion and current events

  • Teacher education about religious literacy

  • The value of religious literacy in unexpected places

  • Religious education and social justice

  • Religious education for interfaith understanding

  • Scholarly vocation and engaging with the other

  • Media’s attempts to educate the public about religion

  • Ways to educate various publics about religion

Paper proposals on other topics relating to religion and education will also be considered.

Submit proposals to:

Janice McLean-Farrell (Chair), City Seminary of New York, psjanicemclean@gmail.com.

Kate Soules (Co-Chair), Boston College, soules@bc.edu.

Benjamin Marcus (Co-Chair), Newseum Institute, bmarcus@newseum.org

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Religion and Ethics

This section invites proposals which correspond to this year’s theme, Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar.  Proposals are encouraged which explore the role that religion and ethics play or might play in public discussions of ethical matters. This section encourages papers which explore the continued divisive nature of public, ethical and moral discussions, either from a descriptive or proscriptive perspective. Proposals which offer possibilities for moving forward in healing the divisiveness which exists around many of these ethical and moral discussions are especially encouraged. What religious, theological, and ethical angles might we consider to offer a promising way forward in the present turmoil? This section also invites proposals which address other contemporary moral questions and debates, especially as they relate to the conference’s theme.

Rationale for the proposed call:

In recent years, the environment of public discussions on ethical and moral issues have increasingly become vitriolic and divisive. 2017 has seen the public rhetoric continue to escalate, even to the point of increased violence. This is not only true of the communities, cities and towns in America, but on the college/university campuses which reside in these communities. This section encourages papers which explore this dynamic, either from a descriptive basis or from a proscriptive perspective. The religious ethical scholar provides a unique opportunity to create spaces in which these discussions can gain new frames of reference and provide the potential to create an environment in which communal growth and healing can take place. This call fits into the conference theme because it focuses on how religious scholars can provide movement forward in an environment which sees little evidence of advancing beyond the present stalemate.  

Submit proposals to:

Michael J. Stell (Chair), Catholic University of America, 71stell@cua.edu.

Ryan Longton (Co-Chair), 28longton@cua.edu.

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Religion and Leadership

The Religion and Leadership Section seeks proposals that address the role of spirituality and religion in leadership within the broader contexts raised by pluralism in society, particularly in the workplace. This year’s conference theme, Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar, speaks directly to the section’s goal of addressing the complex relationship among various institutions, spirituality, pluralism, and “the Other” in the often fraught area of public theology, especially in the present political climate. As scholars with particular qualifications to speak in the public domain, what charge do we carry? How should we seek to impact leadership praxis in increasingly complex and intertwined walks of life?  We seek both individual and panel proposals directed to the conference theme.

Submit proposals to:

Andrey Shirin, Ph.D. (Co-Chair), John Leland Center for Theological Studies, ashirin@leland.edu.

Deborah Evans (Co-Chair), Alvernia University, deborah.evans@alvernia.edu.

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Religion, Conflict, and Peace

Peacemaking is a liminal space, existing at the intersection of multiple areas of study, including religious studies, conflict management/resolution, futures studies, and theology. Our field is both highly theoretical and deeply practical, oftentimes jumping back and forth between dreaming the impossible and processing the traumatically possible. We must be willing to exist at these uncomfortable junctures, as peacemaking often occurs in unanticipated ways and at unexpected times. This begs the question: what frontiers are left unexplored? Consider this an opportunity to dream, to imagine the impossible: what will peacemaking look like in the future? We implore you to be creative, and to bring innovative papers and presentations. We especially welcome creative ways of engaging with this question, including incorporating the arts (poetry, dance, be creative!) as well as bringing practice and theory into dialogue. This section calls for creative re-imaginings of this delicate balance between theory and praxis, especially in light of the risky yet vital roles one must fulfill when serving as a peace practitioner.  

All papers addressing this year’s conference theme of Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar, or directly related to studies on religion, conflict, and peace are encouraged to be considered. The following broader topics are also welcome:

  • Pluralism amidst religious conflict

  • Peacemaking theme and/or methods

Submit proposals to:

Dan Christy Randazzo (Chair), Moorestown Friends School, drandazzo@mfriends.org

Heon Kim (Co-Chair), East Stroudsburg University, heonkim@po-box.esu.edu.

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Religion, Gender, and Sexuality

This section explores the intersection between religion and perspectives on gender and sexuality. Papers on the theme Gender Justice, Sexuality Justice are invited, but quality papers on all topics in religion, gender, and sexuality are welcomed. We are particularly interested in proposals that are related to one of the following themes:

  • Issues of gender and sexuality in interreligious dialogue

  • Feminist approaches in comparative theology

  • Postcolonial and poststructural issues in gender studies

  • Gender issues and multiple religious identities or religious hybridity

  • Sexuality, nonhuman nature, and religion from interdisciplinary perspectives and approaches, including “othering” and ecotheological perspectives, especially focused on “sexual violence” at this time

We encourage submissions by scholars of all sexual identities (including those who are heterosexually identified), multiple disciplines, religious traditions, and perspectives.

Submit proposals to:

Jea Sophia Oh, (Chair), West Chester University of Pennsylvania, sophiajs5@gmail.com.

Minjung Noh, Temple University (Co-Chair) minjung.noh@temple.edu

Corey Harris (Co-Chair), Alvernia University, corey.harris@alvernia.edu.

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Religions of the Latino/a Americas

Description: This section explores diverse religions of Latin America, Latinos in the U.S., and of the Caribbean through diverse disciplinary, theoretical, and methodological perspectives.

Proposals may address any the following themes:

  • Religious and/or spiritual engagements with economic and ecologic sustainability in the Latino/a Americas

  • Neoliberalism in Latin America and the Caribbean, its history, formation, and religious underpinnings

  • Latin America in the age of Trump, prospects, realities, and futures

  • The role of Latin America and the Caribbean in political discourses across the globe

  • Social media and/or other public venues

  • Pedagogy/Andragogy in the study of Latin American and Caribbean Religion

  • Latin America and the Caribbean religions in film, news media, and other mass mediations.

  • Borderlands, contact zones, migration, and other trans-national religious ecologies (including in North America and beyond)

  • Comparative studies of liberationist theologies

  • Festivals, pilgrimages, deportations, gangs, and cartels

  • Indigeneity and translation

  • The “Americas” as colonial and/or post-colonial religious construal

  • Paper proposals on any other topics relating to Religion in the Latino/a Americas are also encouraged.

Send proposals to:

Harold Morales (Co-Chair), Morgan State University, harold.morales@morgan.edu.

Jorge Juan Rodriguez V, Union Theological Seminary, jjrodriguezv@me.com.

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Scriptural Reasoning

Scriptural Reasoning (SR), like any practice, is one that changes over time - and varies from place to place. What changes can SR anticipate as it expands geographically and ideologically through the 21st century?

The 2018 session will have to do with the resources available to SR - thereby reflecting on its sustainability as a practice. For purposes of this CFP, we mean this in two distinct ways: the texts around which SR centers its dialogue, and the frameworks that may inform the practice itself. We invite paper proposals that reflect on SR's resources in academic and religious contexts - as well in secular contexts. There are a few prompts your presentation might address:

  • Is SR sustainable?

  • Does SR need Scripture?

  • What do we mean by "Scripture," as it relates to SR?

  • Reflections on the relationship between SR and the texts it engages

  • Investigations into the traditional frameworks for SR (particularly pragmatism)

  • Explorations into alternative frameworks for SR

  • Reports on the use of SR in various contexts

Please feel free to propose a paper that is unrelated to the above prompts, should you wish to do so.

Please submit a proposal of no more than 300 words. In addition to the proposal requirements, this Section expects the final manuscripts to be submitted by Friday, February 9, 2018, and should be no more than 2,500 words. In the proposal e-mail, please include your name, title, and institutional affiliation (if applicable), as well as why you felt the SR section would fit for your particular proposal. You may reach out to Matthew Vaughan at the e-mail address below if you have any other questions or need assistance.

Submit proposals to:

Matthew Vaughan, (Chair), Instructional Designer, Columbia University, matthew@matthewvaughan.net

Matthew Goldstone (Co-Chair), New York University, msg444@nyu.edu.

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Theology, Aesthetics, and Art

Considering that the theological world is dominated by academic scholars, the role of artist in the academy has virtually diminished. Using the platform of intersectionality/ and or interdisciplinary work between art and theology, how do we begin to reconcile the artist and the academician within the public stratosphere to serve the community-at-large within the means of moral responsibility, while using a creative ethical compass? As James Baldwin asserts, “Artists are here to disrupt the peace,” what is the prophetic vision for the artist and how does one monitor the societal and ethical climate in ways that speak to injustice without becoming swallowed in the waves of sensationalism and trends? What are the personal and collective responsibilities? Papers not specifically related to the conference theme will also be considered.

 Please email the co-chairs of this section the following items:

  • Name

  • Institutional Affiliation

  •  E-mail Address

  • 150-word Abstract

  • 500-word Proposal

Michele Stanback (Chair), Union Theological Seminary, m.lisa.stanback@gmail.com

Jé Hooper (Co-chair), Union Theological Seminary, jrmhooper@gmail.com

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WILDCARD:  Black Theology

Black Theology and Baldwin

James Baldwin, the novelist, artist, prophet, essayist, poet, activist, and critic, has influenced many disciplines including theology and religion. The Black Theology and Baldwin Wildcard Session seeks papers that focus on the relationship between Black Theology and James Baldwin in regards to the conference’s theme, Religion and Theology in a Crossroads Age: The Anticipatory Scholar.  Successful submissions will attend to both Baldwin and Black theology/religion. This section invites submissions that analyze the anticipatory scholar’s role at the crossroads of race, gender, sex, class, politics and the planet (e.g., environmental racism, Katrina, Flint and now Harvey). How might thinking Black theology and Baldwin together anticipates and advance our understanding of such crossroads as well as model anticipatory scholarship, which can, for instance, resists counterproductive specialization, commodification, and disciplinary isolation?  In addition, this session may address topics like literature, art, music, and mass incarceration. Finally, papers may speak to the possibility of bringing together Baldwin and (Black) theology. Is it useful to bring the two together? Why or why not?

Submit proposals to:

 Xavier Pickett (Co-Chair), Princeton Theological Seminary, xavier.pickett@ptsem.edu

 Stanley Talbert (Co-Chair), Union Theological Seminary, stt2117@utsnyc.edu