PAPERS Resources

AAR Annual Meeting
Boston, MA
November 18-21, 2017

2017 Annual Meeting Program (PDF)

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Preliminary 2017 Annual Meeting Program (MS Word)

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Childhood Studies and Religion Unit

Statement of Purpose: 

This Unit’s overall aim is to investigate the complex and multifaceted relation between religion and childhood. The specific goals of the Unit are as follows:

• Provide a forum for focused interdisciplinary and interreligious dialogue about the diverse relations of children and religion
• Heighten academic interest in this topic in all fields represented in the AAR
• Prepare scholars in religious studies to contribute to wider academic discussions about children and childhoods
• Lend the voice of the academy to current questions of public policy and child advocacy

The focus of the Unit is both timely and significant given the present concern for children across the globe and the rising interdisciplinary academic interest in childhood studies. The Unit functions as a forum at the AAR for advancing childhood studies as a new line of scholarly inquiry.

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Call for Papers: 

The Childhood Studies and Religion Unit encourages proposals from scholars of diverse religious traditions and locations who engage in historical, social scientific, humanistic, conceptual, and other methods of research related to children and childhood. For the 2017 meeting, we especially invite proposals engaging the following themes:

• Religious studies perspectives on the history and legacy of boarding/residential schools for Native American, First Nations, Indigenous, and Aboriginal children, including the role of the Canadian Truth and Reconciliation Commission or other similar commissions; children and intergenerational trauma; residential school survivors; the role of the Church and Christian missionaries; Indigenous spirituality and healing. Proposals from Native American, First Nations, Indigenous, and Aboriginal scholars are especially encouraged.

• “Religion on the playground,” addressing the importance of peer interactions, the use of religion in play, and the causes and effects of bullying.

• Children, Childhood, and Spirituality - religiosity, secularity and beyond; addressing rights, possibilities, and barriers for spirituality in children’s lives.

• Representations of children in sacred and popular texts, including how those depictions are used by religious groups.

• Rites of Passage: Children, Youth, and Adolescents in African Religions and Rituals (for a possible joint session with the African Religions Unit).

• Issues surrounding the normative-inspired medical, psychological, mental health, and religious interventions to make the bodies and/or minds of children and young people with disabilities “whole” from a wide variety of religious and methodological perspectives (for a possible joint session with the Religion and Disabilities Studies Unit and the Religions, Medicines, and Healing Unit). Please note that papers for this session will be distributed in advance of the Annual Meeting and will be due to the convener no later than November 1.

Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members until after final acceptance/rejection
Our proposal process strives to be as fair and equal as possible.
ChairSteering Committee