PAPERS Resources

AAR Annual Meeting
Denver, CO
November 17-20, 2018

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Religion and Economy Unit

Statement of Purpose: 

This Unit sponsors multidisciplinary conversations that explore intersections between religious and economic modes of social life. Building upon and extending scholarship that considers how economic terms and constraints orient religious activity, this Unit cultivates scholarship that asks how economic systems and orientations have developed through fields of thought, practice, and resistance that come into view through attention to the "religious." Encouraging conversations that traverse religious traditions, geographic locations, methodologies, and historical time periods, this Unit's collaborative explorations not only address and explore capitalist and non-capitalist economic systems but also consider how broader systems of "exchange" produce social relations among varied actors--from humans to spirits to material objects. By interrogating religion and economy, this Unit also encourages scholars to consider the stakes of other concepts with ongoing currency in the study of religion, including secularism, postsecularism, spirituality, affect, networks, ritual, agency, and subject formation.

Call for Papers: 

The Religion and Economy unit provides a multidisciplinary forum for exploring intersections between religious and economic modes of social life. For the 2018 Annual Meeting, the Religion and Economy unit welcomes any paper or panel proposals related to the group's mission, including but not limited to the following themes:

• Collapse and Crisis
This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the global financial crisis and subprime collapse. The Religion and Economy unit endeavors to use this moment as a convenient prompt for reflection on topics including: (a) specific changes wrought (or not) throughout the world relative to intersections of religious and economic modes of social life in the wake of the 2008 “Great Recession”, and (b) related interrogations of how analyses of concepts such as excess and scarcity, failure and flourishing, slumps and surplus, cycles, sequences, and impasses, can further studies of religion and economy as shared pursuits, practices, and entangled ideational enterprises.

• Canons and Canonization
To generate a conversation about the relationship between Religion and Economy and the state of the study of religion, we invite papers that ask: does the field of Religious Studies have a common “canon”? What does it feature, and how might economic concepts complement, alter, or reorient that canon or ongoing processes of canonization? Papers might consider such concepts as supply and demand, capital, equilibrium, distribution, choice, incentive, disruption, elasticity, profit, gift, contracts, division of labor, property, tax, trade, consumption, pricing, deficit, currency, interest, and risk, among others.

• Capital and Colonial Formations of Race and Religion
We invite proposals that examine relations and formations of race, religion, and the economic. Papers may, for example, explore arguments surrounding the religious and economic dynamics of colonial conquest, slavery, migration, transnational flows of money and religiosity, nativism, reparations, the coloniality of being and legacies of colonial economic social formations.

• Care, Caretaking, and Healthcare
We welcome submissions that consider economies of care, caretaking, and healthcare within broader religious settings and contexts. We are especially interested in papers that address modes and forms of care across chronologies and geographies, from ancient to contemporary, and around the globe (e.g., the effects of healthcare reform on individual and community wellbeing). Co-sponsored with the Religion and Economy Unit and the Religions, Medicines, and Healing Unit.

• Book Panels
Proposals that organize a set of formal responses to a recently published book or publication series that contributes to the broader mission of this unit will also be considered, possibly in co-sponsorship with other AAR program units or groups.

Method: 
PAPERS
Process: 
Proposer names are visible to chairs but anonymous to steering committee members
Leadership: 
ChairSteering Committee