January 20 2018

2017 Southwest Region Call for Papers

map of the AAR Southwest Region

2017 Southwest Regional Meeting

Marriott Hotel, DFW Airport North
Irving, Texas
March 10–12, 2017

General Information

The annual meeting will be held March 10–12, 2017 at the Marriott Hotel, DFW Airport North in Irving, Texas.

The Southwest Commission on Religious Studies invites members of constituent organizations to submit paper proposals for the 2017 regional meeting. Proposals should be submitted to the person designated in each section. Please indicate if the proposal is being submitted to more than one section. Proposals may be submitted to more than one section, but in order to accommodate as many people as possible, papers must not be read more than once during the meeting. Unless otherwise indicated, the deadline for paper proposal submission is Oct. 15, 2016.

A response to your proposal will be sent within one month. If your proposal is accepted, you should confirm your participation in the session with the program chair. In addition, you must register for the meeting. All presenters are expected to register at least one month prior to the meeting, that is by Feb. 10, 2017.

Policy on Undergraduate Papers

In order to apply to present a paper, undergraduates will be required to include a faculty sponsor who is a member of the AAR and to submit the whole paper for consideration.

Powerpoint and Other Projection Media Presentations Policy

Due to the prohibitive costs of hotel audio-visual rentals, the SWCRS does not provide computers, projectors, or video monitors for presentations. Those persons submitting proposals for presentation must be prepared to provide their own equipment, or to plan for printed copies of any visual elements of their presentation. Questions regarding this policy should be addressed to the relevant organization (e.g., AAR, SBL) and/or the section coordinator (e.g., Ethics, Hebrew Bible).

American Academy of Religion

The overarching theme for this conference will be “Religion Matters,” which may be broadly interpreted by contributors who wish to address it. You may submit any proposal that addresses this theme tailored to an individual session below, or—if your work does not seem to fit any of the extant categories—to Marc DiPaolo at dr.dipaolo@gmail.com and Katherine Downey at katherinedowney@sbcglobal.net.

Arts, Literature, and Religion

We would like to investigate artistic representations of religion as a force in everyday life, to note the expectations within these representations, and to measure the influence some understanding or performance of religion has on the perspective these works take. Papers that consider such moments in the arts or literature are welcome. So, too, are presentations or performances that wrestle with depictions of religion in one’s own art (painting, photography, music, creative writing, etc). Other high quality paper topics will be considered as space allows. Proposals should not exceed 500 words and should include a title, a brief description, and an indication of the main arguments the presentation will make. Please include a brief self-introduction. Send proposals to: Marc Edward DiPaolo, dr.dipaolo@gmail.com

**NEW** Religion, Gender & Sexuality

In keeping with the theme for the SWCRS 2017 conference, “Religion Matters,” contributors are invited to consider the ways religion has changed and been changed by understandings and experiences of gender identity and sexual orientation. Papers might examine such questions as:

  1. How is the artificial religious/queer binary constructed and deconstructed in both secular and faith communities?
  2. What are some current developments in the policies and dictates of religious groups in America with regard to sexual orientation and gender identity?
  3. What role does religion play in shaping cultural attitudes and legislation about sexuality and gender identity?
  4. How have queer perspectives challenged and changed traditional heteronormative theologies?
  5. What are the connections between religious performance and gender performance?

Proposals involving multiple presentations or panel discussions (no more than three participants) focused upon a single topic, figure, or text are welcome. Each panelist should provide an abstract for such submissions. Proposals that feature interdisciplinary or interinstitutional participation, and that promise to stimulate productive discussion, will be favored. Abstracts should be no longer than 400 words in length. Send proposals to: Whitney Cox, wcox23@gmail.com

Comparative and Asian Studies in Religion

The Comparative and Asian Studies in Religion section invites paper and panel proposals addressing “Religion Matters” (the 2017 SWCRS program theme) and “Revolutionary Love” (the 2016 AAR presidential theme). The section also invites submissions on Sharia law and the role of the public intellectual to speak out against Islamophobia, Contemplative Studies, and religion and the monstrous. Papers on topics concerning other aspects of Asian religious practice and thought, both historical and contemporary, will also be considered. We also invite participation in a roundtable discussion of Beyond Physicalism: Toward Reconciliation of Science and Spirituality (Edward F. Kelly, Adam Crabtree, Paul Marshall, eds. Rowan & Littlefield, 2015) . Proposals should not exceed 500 words and should include a title, brief description, and indication of the main arguments of the presentation. If using a PowerPoint presentation, please bring your laptop and make your own arrangements for a data projector. Please indicate if you have any special audiovisual requests. Send proposals to: Mark Dennis, m.dennis@tcu.edu

Ethics, Society and Cultural Analysis

Proposals are invited in all areas in the study of ethics, society, and culture. Papers are especially encouraged along the theme of “Religion Matters.” Preference will be given to proposals that address if or how religion matters when (a) interpreting or responding to natural disasters (e.g. tornados, hurricanes, river flooding, etc); (b) participating in political activities at the local, state, and national levels; or (c) addressing violence common in American culture in whatever form it takes (including but not limited to acts of war, sexual violence, and depiction of violence in entertainment). Proposals should not exceed 300 words; they should be sent to both conveners: Paul Martens, Paul_Martens@baylor.edu and Whitney Cox, wcox23@gmail.com

History of Religion

Proposals are invited for papers/panels addressing the following topics:

**NEW** Latina/o, Chicana/o, and Tejana/o Religion:  Since the 1970s, Latino social movements in the United States have been rearticulated in the interaction between Chicano political discourse and theologies of liberation. Those social movements, in turn, have reshaped what it means to live in Latino USA. We invite critical historical and political studies for a panel on how religion matters to Latina, Chicana, and Tejana communities.

**NEW** Religion and Politics: With the ignominious downfall of evangelical senator Ted Cruz’s presidential candidacy, the question of religion’s influence in American politics has been reopened. We invite historical, political, and sociological analyses for a panel on how religion matters in political life.

Historical Traditions in Christian Theology: While studies in popular Christianity have focused on lived religious experience, oftentimes the deep influence of theological tradition in daily life has been overlooked. We invite philosophical and historical studies for a panel on how historical traditions in Christian theology mattered and continues to matter in the lives of Christians.

Please submit proposals to: Justin Michael Doran, jmdoran@utexas.edu

Philosophy of Religion and Theology

Proposals are invited in all areas in philosophy of religion and theology, including metaphysics, phenomenology, epistemology, and theodicy; and systematic, historical, practical, and constructive theology. Papers are especially encouraged along the theme of “Religion Matters.”  Proposals involving multiple presentations or panel discussions (no more than three participants) focused upon a single topic, figure, or text are welcome. Each panelist should provide an abstract for such submissions. Proposals that feature interdisciplinary or inter-institutional participation, and that promise to stimulate productive discussion, will be favored. Abstracts should be no longer than 400 words in length. Send proposals to: Rebecca Huskey, rhuskey@ou.edu

Ritual Studies

Ritual Studies focuses on the study of religious practices in all their dimensions and welcomes paper submissions from students and scholars that contribute to the academic study of ritual. Of particular interests are papers and panel proposals that examine

  1. the Eucharist in the context of the academic study of ritual including proposals from critical scholars, theologians, and liturgical scholars,
  2. aesthetics of ritual, including the study of sound, sight and touch within the context of ritual movement and the construction of ritual space.
  3. theories of ritual and their significance for the study of religion. Of particular interested are themes of sacrifice and symbol.
  4. issues related to the conjunction between rituals and violence and rituals of hate and aggression or the relationship between secular and religious dimensions in ritual.

Abstracts of paper and panel proposals should be at least 250 words long, addressing the theme, thesis, focus, and significance of the presented research along with a short description of the data, theory, and method used. Please direct paper submissions and further questions to: Jens Kreinath, Jens.Kreinath@wichita.edu

Graduate Student Paper Competition

The Southwest region of the AAR is pleased to announce the second annual Graduate Student Paper Competition. The competition seeks to foster graduate student scholarship that reaches the highest levels of creativity and excellence within religious studies. Papers may address any topic within the purview of the regional sections (Arts, Literature, and Religion, Comparative and Asian Studies in Religion, Ethics, Society, and Cultural Analysis, History of Christianity, and Philosophy of Religion and Theology) and should be no more than 5,000 words. Papers must be original and may not have been presented anywhere prior to the current regional meeting. The winner of the competition will be announced at the annual meeting of the region at SWCRS and will receive a $100 cash prize. Please send all submissions, along with a 300-word abstract, to: Rachel Toombs, Rachel_toombs@baylor.edu

Theta Alpha Kappa

Student members of Theta Alpha Kappa chapters in the Southwest Region are invited to submit their research for presentation at a TAK paper session or at a new SWCRS poster session. It should be noted that, although any TAK member is permitted to submit a paper proposal for the TAK panel, this session has traditionally been a forum for undergraduates. One session will be devoted to the best papers; open to all topics. Submissions must come from the chapter adviser and include: the presenter’s name and contact information; the entire paper (preferred) or an abstract of the paper (acceptable); the name of the school; and venue for which the paper was prepared (i.e., honors project, senior thesis, etc.). In the event that there are more proposals than can fit in one session, local chapter advisors may be asked to select the one best submission from their schools. Students whose proposals are not included in the paper session will be encouraged to submit the proposal to the SWCRS poster session and guided through that application process. Submit proposals to: Jenny Veninga, jennv@stedwards.edu

Association for the Scientific Study of Religion

The Association for the Scientific Study of Religion invites paper proposals on any topic concerning the scientific study of religion, particularly those dealing with the sociological, philosophical, economic, historical, psychological, and political considerations of religion in society. The ASSR also welcomes papers from other affiliates of the Southwest Commission on Religious Studies, although papers may only be read in one affiliate. Selected papers submitted to the ASSR are published in the Proceedings of the Association for the Scientific Study of Religion.

Upon an accepted proposal or a request for membership, a membership invoice will be sent; members with PayPal accounts can directly submit their dues through the PayPal link on the ASSR website. All persons interested in participating in the conference are expected to be members of ASSR and must ensure payment of dues as outlined above. IMPORTANT: participants must register for the annual meeting through the SWCRS website and pay the cost of registration that applies to them.

PAPER PROPOSALS   The deadline for submitting paper proposals is end of the day, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016. Proposals should be sent to: Dr. Ben D. Craver, Wayland Baptist University, San Antonio, Texas, at craverb@wbu.edu

PAPER SUBMISSIONS   Paper submissions should be sent to Dr. Jon Loessin, Wharton County Junior College, Wharton, Texas, at  j-dloessin@sbcglobal.net or jonl@wcjc.edu. Papers must be received by end of the day, Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017, to be included in the Proceedings or to be considered for the 2014 Frank P. Forwood Award. The ASSR Style Guide for Papers may be found on the ASSR website.

Society of Biblical Literature

 The Society invites member scholars representing diverse intellectual traditions and social settings to submit paper proposals employing various methods of research and interpretation to the program units (see below under Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, New Testament, and Second Temple Judaism). Proposals relating to the annual SWCRS conference theme “Religion Matters” are encouraged. 

Proposals from graduate students are welcome but, in addition to the participation form, must include a draft of the paper and the name and contact information of a faculty member who knows your work.

Proposals should be submitted no later than 14 October 2016 via the Participation Form available at this link: http://tinyurl.com/gsmfnbg.

Technology Policy: SBL welcomes the use of technology in presentations, but presenters should expect to provide all projection or sound equipment and screens for themselves, as the Region is unable to provide them owing to cost factors.

Hebrew Bible/Old Testament

Members of the society are invited to submit proposals on a variety of topics related to the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, the Apocrypha and the Pseudepigrapha. Proposals may focus on specific exegetical problems, biblical theology, biblical hermeneutics, methodological studies, the Dead Sea Scrolls, race, ethnicity, gender, and pedagogy. (This list is intended to be suggestive rather than exhaustive.)

Please address any questions to the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament program chair: Dr. James Nogalski, Baylor University, Waco, Texas (e-mail: James_Nogalski@baylor.edu).

New Testament

Members of the society are invited to submit proposals for papers on any topic related to the study of the New Testament (e.g., Paul, the Gospels and Acts, the Johannine literature, Jewish and Christian apocrypha, hermeneutics and theology, and contemporary critical and pedagogical approaches. (This list is intended to be suggestive rather than exhaustive.) 

Please address any questions to the New Testament program chair: Dr. Jason Maston, Houston Baptist University, Houston, Texas (e-mail: jmaston@hbu.edu).

Second Temple Judaism

Members of the society are invited to submit proposals for papers on any topic related to the study of Second Temple Jewish ideas, texts, religious, social or political practices, or relevant issues about Judaism in the Greco-Roman world. For the 2017 session we are particularly interested in papers applying gender-related perspectives to the aforementioned aspects of Second Temple Judaism.

Please address any questions to one of the Second Temple Judaism program cochairs: Ms. Annelies Moeser, Brite Divinity School, TCU (e-mail: a.moeser@tcu.edu) or Dr. Ariel Feldman, Brite Divinity School, TCU (e-mail: ariel.feldman@tcu.edu).

SBL Regional Scholar Award Application

Each year the national SBL Conference of Regional Coordinators recognizes excellent papers presented at regional meetings by junior members of the Society. Consideration for the Regional Scholars Award is open to applicants who are at least at the dissertation stage of a doctoral program and who are no more than four years past the receipt of the PhD. 

Each region can nominate one scholar annually. The national SBL Conference of Regional Coordinators selects the regional scholars from these candidates. Nomination by the region is no guarantee of selection by the national organization. Awardees will be encouraged to revise the paper presented at the regional meeting in March 2017, with the help of a mentor, and submit the revised paper to an appropriate program unit of the SBL national meeting. They will be recognized as Regional Scholars at the national meeting. 

 Applicants for the Regional Scholar Award should submit a letter of application (indicating any experience the applicant has presenting papers at the national meeting), a curriculum vitae, and a draft of a paper accepted for presentation at the regional meeting (8–10 pages of text, with appropriate documentation) to the appropriate regional SBL program unit chair (see below) by 10 January 2017. Please indicate as requested at the bottom of the Participation Form if you intend to apply for the Regional Scholar Award.