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NAASR 2022 Annual Meeting: Call for Papers

**DEADLINE EXTENDED TO MARCH 8TH**

2022 Annual Meeting of the North American Association for the Study of Religion

Call For Papers

Critique in the Study of Religion: Past, Present, and Future

The 2021 Annual Meeting addressed the idea of “crisis” as an organizing principle for practitioners and scholars of religion. Krínein (Gr.), from which the English term “crisis” derives, also gives us the word “critique.” Many of our members have sought to position NAASR as an intellectual space that emphasizes and facilitates the critical study of religion across a wide range of specializations. However, what counts as “critique” remains highly contested, as does the question of whether such a term best encapsulates the primary mission of NAASR. What exactly does “critical religious studies” imply? Is it a distinctive set of analytic approaches or rather rhetorics deployed in defense of particular intellectual or professional positions? To what degree does adopting the moniker of “critic” help or hinder our scholarly vision? In what ways can the critical study of religion make important interventions in the current intellectual trends shaping the academic study of religion today?

The program for 2022 will explore the role of “critique” in the study of religion as it applies to four areas:

1.     Theory: What theoretical frameworks have been or currently are productive/useful for performing “critique” in the study of religion? And which theoretical frameworks have critical religion scholars not adequately engaged with? 

2.     Method: What methodological criteria should constitute a “critical” approach to studying religion — and what’s the case for these rather than others? 

3.     Teaching: How should critical religious studies manifest in pedagogy? Is the critique deployed in producing scholarship about religion the same as the critique used in teaching that scholarship, i.e., in religious studies pedagogy? If so, in what sense? If different, how are they different?

4.     Scholar: Does being a critical scholar require distance from or disinterest in our data? If so, to what degree? Is being a critical scholar of religion incompatible pursuing other political and activistic commitments? If not, how does one balance these responsibly?

NAASR invites submissions that substantially respond to any one of these four provocations and explore the implications for the field. Submissions for possible respondents must each:

1.     Identify the area (one of the four immediately above) on which they will focus

2.     Provide a brief (500-word max) statement that outlines the basic elements of their response to the identified theme.

The sessions for the annual meeting will follow a roundtable format exploring each of these four (4) themes. Participants will submit full papers that apply their expertise to the designated topic one month prior to the meeting (approximately early October 2022). Each session will feature an invited scholar who will introduce the panelists and offer substantive remarks on the topic. Participants will have six minutes to summarize their papers and will be followed by informal discussion between panelists and general audience for roughly one hour. Ultimately the aim is to publish these sessions as an edited volume under the NAASR Working Papers series with Equinox publishing.

We welcome scholars from diverse areas of expertise and disciplinary training.

Please upload submissions on our Google Form: https://forms.gle/tBGymCaYpdT9MwJ89 no later than 5pm EST March 8, 2022.

Email any questions to dennislorusso@gmail.com

NAASR MEDIA AND COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: JANUARY 31, 2022

NAASR Media and Communications Coordinator

NAASR is looking for a graduate student or early career scholar to coordinate its social media and other online communications. Under the supervision of NAASR President, Vice-President and Secretary/Treasurer, this individual will support social media content creation and operations.

This position will come with a Travel and Conference honorarium.

Responsibilities:

  • Monitor NAASR social media accounts (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter).
  • Create cross-platform content promoting activities, publications, and other initiatives by NAASR and NAASR members.
  • Promote NAASR’s position as a scholarly society dedicated to historical, critical, and social scientific approaches to the study of religion, as well as a relentlessly reflexive critique of the theories, methods, and categories used in such study.

Qualifications:

  • Enthusiastic and knowledgeable about social media.
  • Excellent organizational and communication skills.
  • Ability to take and upload digital photos.
  • Initiative, sound judgement, and ability to work independently and complete assigned tasks within identified timeframes.
  • Keen attention to detail when proofreading, copyediting, and fact-checking.
  • Comfortable utilizing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, WordPress.
  • Familiarity with Google Docs, Microsoft Word, Excel, and Email template program.

Opportunities:

  • Gain valuable social media experience and proficiency in communicating to a large audience.
  • Learn how to participate in a creative and collaborative content-production process.
  • Network with NAASR members and other scholars in the field of religious studies and cognate fields.

Applications:

Email applications to NAASR President, Rebekka King (rebekka.king@mtsu.edu) by January 31, 2022.

To apply, send your CV, a brief cover letter describing how you can contribute to NAASR communications, and how the position might be beneficial to you. Please attach 2 – 3 examples of your best work on any social media platform.

This position is a volunteer position, which includes a travel stipend to attend the NAASR annual meeting.

New Collaboration Between NAASR, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, and The Bulletin for the Study of Religion

We have an exciting announcement for members. Thanks to a generous donation, NAASR will be partnering with The Bulletin for the Study of Religion (Equinox Publishing) and the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, to provide all NAASR members with a subscription to the Bulletin. This will include a print subscription, mailed to each member, in addition to online access.


Renew Membership here: NAASR Website 

Update address here: Google Forms NAASR Member Information


A bit more about the Bulletin:The Bulletin for the Study of Religion is one of the longest, continually-running publications in the North American field. Published by Equinox and produced by the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama, the Bulletin begins a new chapter as a magazine for the international field. Richard Newton serves as Editor of this feature-based publication that highlights currents at all the sites where scholars carry out their work. With field-oriented peer-reviewed articles, department-level innovations, and conversations with colleagues, the Bulletin keeps you in the loop. Want to learn more about the Digital Humanities? We’ve got you covered with The Download. Trying to put your academic skills and knowledge to work. Take a look at those who’ve done it well in The Profession. Got a burning question, Sage D’Vice’s column will help you work it out. All this and more is in the new Bulletin! And NAASR is excited to share that each member will receive a subscription–a fitting way to celebrate fifty years of the Bulletin!


We are very happy to be working with Richard Newton, the new Editor of the Bulletin, to bring this long-established (this is the 50 year anniversary) and newly-revamped publication to your homes or offices each quarter. 
To be sure you receive all issues, please renew your membership ASAP, and to be sure we have the correct mailing address for you, please fill out the GOOGLE FORM with your most recent information. If you have already paid for 2021 (or are a lifetime member) but are unsure which address you have on file with us, please fill out the Google form. You can add a note to me in the comment box letting me know you are just updating your info. 


Deadline to renew membership or join in order to receive all 2021 issues in print is April 23. If you pay dues later, you may miss the first issue, and we cannot send back issues. Please be sure to renew your NAASR membership for 2021 now. Our new partnership with Equinox and the University of Alabama will be in addition to the online subscription to Method & Theory in the Study of Religion (Brill) that you already receive as a NAASR member. That will continue as well. 

Renew Membership here: NAASR Website 

Update address here: Google Forms NAASR Member Information

NAASR 2020 Annual Meeting Preliminary Program

#naasr2020

The North American Association for the Study of Religion would like to announce that we are canceling the in-person meeting this year and replacing it with an online virtual meeting. While we hope progress continues in the fight against COVID-19, we believe that travel and group meetings might unnecessarily jeopardize the health of our members and other attendees. A virtual meeting allows us to gather without putting ourselves and others at risk.

In the coming months, we will release the schedule for the virtual meeting (including all panels and the business meeting) and will share the link with anyone who is interested. Thank you to everyone for understanding, and we look forward to seeing you virtually in November and then hopefully in person for 2021’s meeting in San Antonio.

In the meantime, we are happy to announce and to share our preliminary program. This year we are breaking with the format we used for the last several years and are instead hosting four roundtables explicitly focusing on applied method and theory.

 

First Panel: Class, Identity, and Religion

Presiding:
Andie Alexander (Emory University)

Presenting:
Andrew Durdin (Florida State University)
James Dennis Lorusso (Georgia State University)
Cody Musselman (Yale University)
Jeremy Posadas (Austin College)
Matt Sheedy (University of Bonn)
Merinda Simmons (University of Alabama)

Second Panel: Pure Christian America: “Purity” as a Concept for the Critical Analysis of Contemporary Christian Nationalism in the US

Presiding:
Daniel Miller (Landmark College)

Presenting:
Daniel Miller (Landmark College)
Bradley Onishi ( Skidmore College)
Rima Vesely-Flad (Warren Wilson College)
Sara Moslener (University of Central Michigan)

Third Panel: Data and Theory in Computational and Statistical Modeling of Religion

Presiding:
Wesley Wildman (Boston University

Presenting:
Ann Taves (UC Santa Barbara)
LeRon Shults (University of Agder, Kristiansand)
Kate Stockly (Boston University)
Wesley Wildman (Boston University)
Connor Wood (Center for Mind and Culture)

Fourth Panel: The Localized Politics of Defining Religion

Presiding:
Jacob Barret (University of Alabama)

Presenting:
Emily Crews (University of Chicago)
Brad Stoddard (McDaniel College)
Savannah Finver (The Ohio State University)
Michael Graziano (University of Northern Iowa)
Richard Newton (University of Alabama)

#naasr2020 • Nov. 20-22  

NAASR 2020 Call for Papers

Show Us Your Data: Method and Theory in Action

Call for Proposals

The past five years, NAASR’s meetings focused on specific themes (theory, method, data, key categories, and the field). These meetings addressed a range of topics—some familiar, some new—and resulted in insightful discussions at the meetings and beyond. These meetings and discussions tended to dwell on the theoretical. At NAASR 2020, however, we are asking participants to focus on their data, showing how method and theory inform their work in their local data domains.

Breaking with the model used for the past several annual meetings, we have an open call inviting participants to submit roundtable discussions (each roundtable should include five-seven participants). We will also accept individual submissions or partial panels seeking additional participants, although priority will be given to complete roundtables. The participants in each panel will collectively complete their presentations within one hour, leaving roughly an hour for open discussion.

This is therefore a call for roundtables. Each submission should include:

  1. a working title
  2. a list of participants
  3. a summary of the broader topic the roundtable will address
  4. a brief description of each participant’s work
  5. reflections on the roundtable’s larger theoretical intervention(s)/contribution(s) to the field

Potential topics include, but are not limited to, area studies, reflections on influential scholarly works, and roundtables on specific topics.

We invite scholars from diverse data domains to contribute to each roundtable. Each submission should also include graduate students and early career scholars.

Following the precedent set over the past several years, the aim once again is to publish these workshops as a book under the NAASR Working Papers series with Equinox Publishing.

Please send complete panels or  proposals as a file attachment by March 1, 2020, to NAASR VP Rebekka King at rebekka.king@mtsu.edu

#naasr2020 • Nov. 20-23, Boston, MA

NAASR_2020_CFP

 

NAASR 2019 Annual Meeting Program

#naasr2019 • Nov. 22-24 • San Diego, CA

“The Field”: Assessing and Critiquing the Academic Study of Religion

We are pleased to announce the program for the 2019 Annual Meeting.
We are still accepting applications for participants for our graduate workshops.

Friday, November 22, 2019

Teaching the Field 
10:00 AM-11:50 AM Convention Center-23C (Upper Level East)
Main paper author: Leslie Dorrough Smith (Avila University)
Chair: Tommy Carrico (Florida State University)
Respondents:
Rita Lester (Nebraska Wesleyan University)
Ian Alexander Cuthbertson (Dawson College)
Leonie C. Geiger (University of Groningen)
Martha Smith Roberts (Denison University)

 

History of the Field
1:00 PM-2:50 PM Convention Center-23C (Upper Level East)
Main Paper Author: Russell McCutcheon (University of Alabama)
Chair: Melody Everest (University of Alberta)  
Respondents:
James Edmonds (Arizona State University)
D. Jamil Grimes (Middle Tennessee State University)
Andrew Durdin (Florida State University)
Rebekka King (Middle Tennessee State University)

 

The Role and Influence of Private Funding of the Field
3:00 PM-4:50 PM Convention Center-25A (Upper Level East)
Main paper author: Gregory Alles (McDaniel College)
Chair: Allison Isidore (University of Alabama)
Respondents:
Joshua Patterson (University of Georgia)
Michael J. Altman (University of Alabama)
John W. McCormack (Aurora University)
Natalie Avalos (University of Colorado-Boulder)

 

NAASR Reception 7:00PM-9:00PM
Location: Half Door Brewing Company, 903 Island Ave, San Diego, California 92101

 

Saturday, November 23, 2019

International Perspectives on the Field
10:00 AM-11:50 AM Hilton Bayfront-Aqua A (Third Level)
Main paper author: Rosalind I. J. Hackett (University of Tennessee-Knoxville)
Chair: Sierra Lawson (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
Respondents:
F. LeRon Shults (University of Agder)
Tenzan Eaghll (Maidol University)
Vaia Touna (University of Alabama)
Yasmina Burezah (University of Bonn)

 

NAASR Business Meeting
Saturday, 1:00 PM-2:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 204B (Second Level)

 

Sunday, November 24, 2019

NAASR Graduate Student Workshops*

All graduate workshops held on Sunday, November 24, 2019 in Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 202B (Second Level)

Session One: Job Workshop – 10:00 AM-11:00 AM 
Russell McCutcheon (University of Alabama) and Matt Sheedy (University of Manitoba)

Session Two: Academic Publishing for Graduate Students – 11:10 AM-12:10 PM 
Emily Clark (Gonzaga University) and Andie Alexander (Emory University)

Graduate Student Luncheon – 12:10 PM-1:10 PM 

Session Three: Navigating the Politics of Academia – 1:10 PM-2:10 PM 
Rebekka King (Middle Tennessee State University) and Richard Newton (University of Alabama)

Session Four: Alternative Careers for Religious Studies Scholars – 2:20 PM-3:20 PM 
Brad Stoddard (McDaniel College) and Emily Crews (University of Alabama)

*Scholars of all concentrations within the field of Religious Studies are welcome to join the workshop—whether a NAASR member or not. Space is limited, so application does not guarantee participation, although we intend to accommodate as many people as we can. To register, please email NAASR VP Rebekka King at rebekka.king@mtsu.edu by no later than October 18, 2019. In this request to register please include your current degree or professional career stage and identify which session or sessions you would like to attend.

NAASR Graduate Student Workshops CFP

NAASR Working Groups 2019
American Examples
             Organized by Michael J. Altman

Critical Considerations of “Race” in Religious Studies
             Organized by Emily Crews, Richard Newton, and K. Merinda Simmons

#naasr2019 • Nov. 22-24 • San Diego, CA

Jonathan Z. Smith Conference in Trondheim, Norway (June 2019)

“When the Chips are Down,” It’s Time to Pick Them Up: Thinking with Jonathan Z. Smith

Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies Norwegian University of Science and Technology Trondheim, Norway June 4-5, 2019

poster jpg

You can also find the abstracts HERE and the program HERE.

The Conference is also on Facebook where you can “like” the group HERE to follow, comment, ask questions, and get more information. During the conference, you can follow the hashtag #JZSatNTNU for live tweet updates.

NAASR Annual Meeting Program 2019 #naasr2019 • San Diego, CA

The North American Association for the Study of Religion is pleased to announce the program for our 2019 Annual Meeting in San Diego, California, November 22-24, 2019. Specific times and locations will be announced in the coming weeks.

 NAASR Annual Meeting Program

History of the Field
Main paper author: Russell T. McCutcheon

Respondents:
James Edmonds
Jamil Grimes
Andrew Durdin
Rebekka King

International Perspectives on the Field
Main paper author: Rosalind Hackett
Respondents:

LeRon Shults
Tenzan Eaghll

Vaia Touna
Yasmina Burezah

Teaching the Field
Main paper author: Leslie Dorrough Smith

Respondents:
Rita Lester           
Ian Alexander Cuthbertson
Leonie C. Geiger
Martha Smith Roberts

The Role and Influence of Private Funding on the Field
Main paper author: Gregory Alles

Respondents:
Joshua Patterson
Michael J. Altman

John W. McCormack
Natalie Avalos

NAASR Working Groups 2019
American Examples
             Organized by Michael J. Altman

Critical Considerations of “Race” in Religious Studies
             Organized by Emily Crews, Richard Newton, and K. Merinda Simmons

NAASR Graduate Student Workshops*
Session One: Job Workshop
Session Two: Academic Publishing for Graduate Students
Session Three: Navigating the Politics of Academia
Session Four: Alternative Careers for Religious Studies Scholars

*Scholars of all concentrations within the field of Religious Studies are welcome to join the workshop—whether a NAASR member or not. Space is limited, so application does not guarantee participation, although we intend to accommodate as many people as we can. To register, please email NAASR VP Rebekka King at rebekka.king@mtsu.edu by no later than October 18, 2019. In this request to register please include your current degree or professional career stage and identify which session or sessions you would like to attend.

#naasr2019 • Nov. 22-24 • San Diego, CA

NAASR 2019 Graduate Student Workshops CFP

NAASR Graduate Student Workshops: Call for Participants

At our annual meeting in 2019, NAASR will sponsor four one-hour workshops for graduate students. One need not be a NAASR member to apply, although NAASR members will receive priority. Each session will explore a specific topic, and students can participate in any or all of the sessions. NAASR will provide a free lunch for participants as well. Scholars of all concentrations within the field of Religious Studies are welcome to join the workshop—whether a NAASR member or not. Space is limited, so application does not guarantee participation, although we intend to accommodate as many people as we can.

To register, please email NAASR VP Rebekka King at rebekka.king@mtsu.edu by no later than October 18, 2019. In this request to register please include your current degree or professional career stage and identify which session or sessions you would like to attend.

All workshops are on Sunday, November 24, 2019

Session One: Job Workshop
10:00 AM-11:00 AM, Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 202B (Second Level)
Russell McCutcheon (University of Alabama) and Matt Sheedy (University of Manitoba)

This workshop will explore the employment challenges facing early career scholars. Led by Russell McCutcheon and Matt Sheedy, this session addresses issues important to junior academics (notably, but not exclusively, ABDs now entering/about to enter the job market) by demonstrating how a professional organization can provide a practical and strategic forum for job-market advice. Workshop leaders will evaluate the participants’ C.V. and sample cover letter. They will also discuss the job market, the hiring process, interviews, and other issues related to the job market.

Session Two: Academic Publishing for Graduate Students
11:10 AM-12:10 PM Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 202B (Second Level)
Emily Clark (Gonzaga University) and Andie Alexander (Emory University)

This session will explore academic publishing opportunities for graduate students. Graduate students are not in positions to publish books, but numerous publication opportunities exist for them. Led by Emily Clark and Andie Alexander, this panel will help participants identify academic publishing opportunities and will provide strategies and tips for successfully publishing, with the goal of increasing marketability on the job market.

Graduate Student Luncheon – 12:10 PM-1:10 PM Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 202B (Second Level)

Session Three: Navigating the Politics of Academia
1:10 PM-2:10 PM, Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 202B (Second Level)
Rebekka King (Middle Tennessee State University) and Richard Newton (University of Alabama)

Academia is coming to terms with its own #metoo movement. Graduate students and early career scholars are particularly vulnerable to harassment, discrimination, and abuse. This session will provide a forum to discuss the institutional politics and power dynamics that make it difficult to report such experiences in academia (in particular for women and minoritized groups). Rebekka King, Richard Newton, and Stacie Swain will provide input on strategies for making campuses safer, identifying resources for victims, and generating best practices for allies and bystanders.

Session Four: Alternative Careers for Religious Studies Scholars
2:20 PM-3:20 PM, Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 202B (Second Level)
Brad Stoddard (McDaniel College) and Emily Crews (University of Alabama)

 With more scholars competing for fewer jobs, PhDs in Religious Studies are increasingly looking for careers outside the academy. This workshop, led by Brad Stoddard and Emily Crews, will identify fields and career paths for PhDs who wish or who otherwise need to pursue alternative careers.

**

#naasr2019 San Diego, California, November 22-24, 2019

NAASR 2019 Annual Meeting CFP

“The Field”: Assessing and Critiquing the Academic Study of Religion

Call for Proposals

At our 2018 meeting, NAASR sponsored a panel commemorating the work, legacy, and influence of former NAASR President, Jonathan Z. Smith. Much of the discussion addressed his important work Imagining Religion, where Smith famously called scholars to be mindful of the ways they “imagine” religion and so-called religious data. Building off this crucial insight, NAASR 2019 will highlight the field of the academic study of religion and its impact on the ways that scholars and others imagine religion. NAASR 2019 will explore various factors that influence the production of academic discourses on religion and their dissemination in the classroom, in academic literature, in public debates, and in other forms of information dissemination. Specifically, the program for 2019 will focus on four topics: History of the Field, The Role and Influence of Private Funding of the Field, Teaching the Field, and International Perspectives on the Field.

A few of the issues that we intend to address are: How is religion constructed and depicted in the academic study of religion? How do private donors selectively privilege certain descriptions of religion, and to what ends? How do instructors communicate and/or critique these descriptions to students and to broader audiences? Scholars are increasingly called to engage in public scholarship. What is public scholarship, who answers these calls, and how do scholars imagine religion in this scholarship?

Following the model used for the past several annual meetings, four main, substantive papers will be invited and distributed both to respondents and to NAASR members approximately one month prior to the meeting. The authors of the main papers will summarize their papers at the meeting. Each paper will then have four respondents, who will have fifteen minutes each to reply to the main paper. An open discussion will follow for the remainder of the session.

Following the precedent set over the past four years, the aim once again is to publish these sessions as a book (with responses from the main paper presenters) under the NAASR Working Papers series with Equinox Publishing (edited by Martie Smith Roberts).

This is therefore a call for respondents.

The four main papers will be invited, each to examine the implications of framing our research as focusing on one of the following topics:

  • History of the Field
  • The Role and Influence of Private Funding of the Field
  • Teaching the Field
  • International Perspectives on the Field

The main presenters will be asked to analyze the construction of religion in academic literature in light of their assigned theme (or articulated theme, given theme, specific theme), to advocate/critique scholarship carried out in that vein, and to explore its implications both for the field and for the broader imagining of religion. Submissions for possible respondents (16 in total are needed) must each:

  1. identify the key theme (one of the four immediately above) on which they wish to focus in their reply
  2. provide a brief (max. 500 words) statement on the most pressing issue(s) in need of consideration when addressing scholarship on religion and one of these themes
  3. as part of (2), discuss how their scholarship and/or field of study explores the theme

We would like to pair scholars from diverse data domains.

NAASR especially invites submissions from early career scholars who have an interest in the topics explored in our sessions.

Please send your proposal as a file attachment by March 1, 2019, to NAASR VP Rebekka King at rebekka.king@mtsu.edu

#naasr2019 • Nov. 22-24 • San Diego, CA