December 16 2018

New England-Maritimes Region

Map of the AAR New England-Maritimes Region

2018 New England-Maritimes Regional Meeting

April 7, 2018
Wentworth Institute of Technology
550 Huntington Ave.
Boston, MA 02115

2018 Call for Papers

Conference Early Bird Registration of $30.00 (until March 23, 2018) via Eventbrite at (ALL Conference attendees and presenters must be registered. Registration includes a Box Lunch and beverages and snacks).  After March 23, 2018 the Conference Registration will increase to $40.00.

BEFORE Submitting your proposal PLEASE READ ALL THESE DIRECTIONS carefully

The NEMAAR Conference is open to all individuals, though those with accepted proposals must be active (i.e., current paid-up) members of the AAR by no later than March 1, 2018. AAR members from Regions other than NEMAAR are invited to participate, though the Graduate Student Essay Competition is limited graduate students of institutions within the geographical boundaries of NEMAAR.

Proposal Submission Deadline & Practicalia By Wednesday January 17, 2018 please e-mail a one-page, double-spaced Paper Proposal (c. 250 words) in a PC-compatible electronic file (doc, docx, or pdf) named with your own surname to NEMAAR Regional Coordinator James Bretzke at with “NEMAAR Paper Proposal” in the Subject Line.  Include within the proposal itself your own name, your institutional affiliation (if any), and contact information, including e-mail address.  We plan on including the e-mail information in the Conference Program, and if you wish not to have such information included please state this clearly in your Proposal Information.  We do need, though, the e-mail address for internal communication with all those submitting a proposal.

While there is no set Conference Theme, we are especially interested in papers/panels on Religion & Technology Or Religion & Science. Other paper or panel proposals also are welcome.  In your proposal indicate the general subject or interest area (e.g., Ethics, Religions in Asia, Historical Theology, Gender & Sexuality, Theology & Art, Islam, Comparative Religions, Spirituality, etc.) as well as the specific title of your paper. Also please indicate if you will need any AV equipment or have other special needs.  If you have someone who might serve as a convener for your Session please indicate that as well.  If no Convener is designated we will do our best to find a volunteer.


Panel proposals are most welcome, and in the case of a successful panel proposal an entire 75 minute Session will be devoted to the Panel Presentation and Discussion.

Abstract: Also include a c. 75 word Abstract of your paper, which will be used in the Conference Program should your paper be accepted. The Abstract does NOT “count” in the limit of the one-page Paper Proposal.

Conference Format

Individual, concurrent Conference Sessions will be 75 minutes in length. Single Papers accepted will be grouped with another Paper in the same general area, so presenters each would be asked to limit their individual presentation to about 25 minutes, which comes to 12–13 pages of written text, double-spaced and with 12 point font.  This format then would allow time for some reasonable follow-up discussion and questions. Panel proposals accepted will have the entire 75 minute concurrent session at their disposal (i.e., only one panel per 75-minute concurrent session will be scheduled).

Notification of Paper Proposal Acceptance

Authors of proposals will be notified by the second week of February and at that time all accepted paper presenters must become active (i.e., paid up) members of the American Academy of Religion and will also be expected to complete paid registration for the conference itself.

Conference Registration, Fees, and Practicalia

The Conference Fee is a modest $30.00 for Early Bird Registration (until March 23, 2018) and will include a box lunch and limited snacks and beverages.  After March 23, 2018 the Registration Fee will rise to $40.00 Very, very limited funds may be available for travel by NEMAAR members only outside of Metro Boston. Please send the details for your travel request in a separate e-mail to James Bretzke at with NEMAAR Travel Funds Request in the subject header.  No other conference-related expenses such as housing, parking, etc. can be paid for Conference participants by NEMAAR.  Since the Conference site is quite accessible by the Green E Line conference participants are encouraged to take public transportation, car-pool, taxi, Uber, Lyft, etc. Some on-site parking though will be available in a Wentworth lot. Online Early Bird registration, via EventBrite, will be available until March 23, 2018 at

All those whose proposals have been accepted are expected to present their own papers at the regional conference.

Plenary Speaker

Dr. Calvin Mercer, Professor of Religious Studies at East Carolina University (for more see:

Dr. Mercer has been addressing the opportunities, dangers, and religious implications of human enhancement technology for over a decade and is among a growing number of scholars addressing the broader social, political, and economic implications. Much of his work is summarized in this podcast interview: Dr. Mercer wants to promote, among academics and faith communities, substantive reflection on these questions, which he considers some of the most urgent public debates that need to occur in the world. Also trained in clinical psychology, Dr. Mercer practiced professionally part-time for over a decade and uses this discipline in his published work on religion, as exampled in his 2009 book by Praeger, Slaves to Faith: A Therapist Looks Inside the Fundamentalist Mind.

Annual Regional Business Meeting

In addition to the Conference presentations there will be the annual NEMAAR Business Meeting convened by the NEMAAR President Dr. Paul Firenze, assisted by Past-President Dr. Ronald Bernier, NEMAAR Regional Coordinator Rev. Dr. James Bretzke, SJ. Elections for NEMAAR officers will be held at this annual Business Meeting.

Graduate Student Paper Competition

Graduate student presenters who are currently enrolled in a degree program in an institution within the geographical boundaries of NEMAAR (New England and Maritime States) are eligible to enter the competition for best graduate student paper, which comes with a small monetary award.  Papers considered for this competition should be 5,000–7,000 words, 12-point font and double-spaced, and must be submitted no later than March 1, 2018 to Professor Ann Marie Bahr at Winners will be announced, and must be physically present at the Conference Business Meeting on April 7, 2018.

For any Conference-related questions not already answered in this CFP please e-mail NEMAAR Regional Coordinator James Bretzke at and indicate your question in the subject-header.

The Full Conference Program, when it is ready in early March 2018, will be posted both to the NEMAAR node on the AAR web-site ( and at

Public Transportation: MBTA Green Line "E" (Heath Street) car to the Museum of Fine Arts stop. Wentworth is across the street: OR Orange Line to Ruggles Stop. Wentworth is about a three-block walk up Ruggles Street to the corner of Ruggles and Parker Street. A Wentworth Campus Map is available at