AAR Annual Meeting
November 18-21, 2017
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This Unit seeks to engage the critical issues at the intersection of religion, literature, and the arts. We are concerned with both the aesthetic dimensions of religion and the religious dimensions of literature and the arts, including the visual, performative, written, and verbal arts. Approaches to these two avenues of concern are interdisciplinary and varied, including both traditional methodologies — theological, hermeneutical, and comparative approaches associated with the history of religions — and emerging methodologies, those that emerge from poststructuralism, studies in material culture, and cultural studies.
The Arts, Literature, and Religion Unit seeks proposals that address a range of interconnections between religious and creative practice and understanding, with a preference for the topics below. We are especially interested in panel proposals and in modes of presentation that go beyond paper reading. Successful proposals will clearly articulate the primary thesis of the presentation and its contribution to the field. Proposals will integrate creative praxis and religion in meaningful ways.
• Art, literature, and religious traditions which directly relate to the New England area at the beginning of colonialism; Boston and New England as a site for
religious memory and resistance in literature and art.
• Native Americans and the scandal of colonialism in literature, religion, and art; as well as other forms of colonial identity and trauma, through the lens of literature, religion, and art.
• Art, religion, and literature connected to the “aesthetics” of nationalism; how does art, religion, and literature shape a national identity and create nations within nations.
• Poetry, poetics, and theopoetics; textual and/or artistic representations of the interplay between poetry and religion with a preference for engagement of contemporary poetry.
• Religion within contemporary African literature for a possible joint session with the African Religions Unit.
• We also welcome individual papers and/or panel proposals on any other topic in arts, literature, and religion.