PAPERS Resources

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

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Native Traditions in the Americas Unit

Statement of Purpose: 

This Unit sees its mission as the promotion of the study of Native American religious traditions and thereby the enrichment of the academic study of religion generally, by engaging in discourse about culturally-centered theories and encouraging multiple dialogues at the margins of Western and non-Western cultures and scholarship. The Unit is committed to fostering dialogue involving Native and non-Native voices in the study of North, Central, and South American Native religious traditions and to engaging religious studies scholarship in robust conversation with scholarship on other facets of Native cultures and societies.

Call for Papers: 

We invite individual paper and group proposals on any aspect of Native Traditions in the Americas (North, Central and South). We especially encourage proposals on the following topics in light of AAR’s theme of religion and the most vulnerable:

• The Dakota access pipeline protests at Standing Rock.

• For a possible quad-sponsorship with the Law, Religion and Culture Unit, the Religion and Ecology Unit and the Indigenous Religious Traditions Unit: When the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed suit in U.S. District Court against the Army Corps of Engineers in July 2016, they argued that the Dakota Access Pipeline "threatens the Tribe’s environmental and economic well-being, and would damage and destroy sites of great historic, religious, and cultural significance to the Tribe." We seek paper or panel proposals for a co-sponsored session on the intersections of law, ecology, and Native American traditions.

• Urban Religious Indigeneity for possible co-sponsorship with Indigenous Religious Traditions: While indigenous communities are often seen as necessarily connected to rural spaces and places, urban centers have also historically been central locales for the development and persistence of indigenous religious traditions. We invite proposals that examine the role of religion in urban indigenous communities both past and present. Moreover, while our discussion will not be limited to indigenous communities in the New England area, we welcome papers that engage religious indigeneity in Boston and the surrounding region. We also encourage papers that examine how the practice of these religious traditions in urban spaces and places challenge constructions of indigeneity.

• Indigenous feminisms and vulnerability addressing a broad range of topics including but not limited to women and activism, sexual assault, silencing of victims, decolonizing of gender identity and roles.

• Loss of local sacred sites and healthy places in the New England area.

• Health of planet and animals such as habitat loss or extinction threats.

• Space and place for indigenous rhetoric and indigenous-based scholarship within AAR.

• Technologies of resistance such as boycotting, protests, walks, rides, and online petitions.

Proposer names are visible to chairs but anonymous to steering committee members
ChairSteering Committee