AAR Annual Meeting
November 18-21, 2017
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This Unit is designed to serve as a forum for the examination of religious issues related to the social, cultural, and political development of Europe. Its guiding principles include a commitment to scholarly dialogue across disciplines, a comparative spirit sensitive to Europe’s religious diversity, and a transhistorical appreciation of the full trajectory of the European experience.
This unit analyzes religion in Europe or related to Europe in any historical period. We encourage interdisciplinary, interreligious, and comparative approaches to the topic. For the 2017 meeting we especially seek proposals related to one or more of the following themes:
• the effect of migration and the refugee crisis in Europe, including--but not limited to--its effect on religious discourse in relation to right-wing movements and/or its relationship to post-9/11 discourses on religion; the resurgence of religion and the shape of religious discourse in the context of a secular state; and the question of whether or not there is still a European identity toward which the other religion is contrasted;
• for the Annual Meeting's theme of "Religion and the Most Vulnerable," religion, religious-secular pluralism, and interreligious coalitions in relation to vulnerable subjectivities in Europe, including immigrants and LGBTQ communities, the latter especially in Central and Eastern Europe;
• in honor of the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation, the way in which the Protestant Reformation affected the shape of European identity and its legacy on the shape of religious identity in Europe today;
• comparative approaches to Muslim headscarves in different European countries or between Europe and North America, including--but not limited to--how these approaches raise questions about policing women's bodies and attire by religion and the secular state (for a possible co-sponsored session with the Women in Religion unit).
This year a joint-sponsored session with the Men, Masculinities, and Religions (MMR) and Islam, Gender, Women (IGW) units will examine: Islamophobia, the body, and gendered/racialized policies of the state from a transnational perspective (including, but not limited to, European perspectives). As opposed to a traditional paper/panel setup, the session will be formed around a set of very short (6-7 minute) initial provocations/remarks that will serve as the foundation for subsequent discussion by session attendees seated at small discussion tables.
Therefore, for this joint-sponsored session, IGW, MMR, and RiE are not accepting proposals for standard full-length conference papers or for prearranged paper panels. Rather, we solicit proposals for short remarks that will serve as the basis for small group discussions. Possible topics for proposals include: state surveillance of Muslim communities; state policies in relation to gender binarization; gendered/sexualized practices of detention or torture; the production and circulation of images/representations of Muslim men as terrorists; headscarf/hijab/burkini controversies and legislation; gendered/sexualized hate crimes in the broader public; the mainstreaming of alt-right and white nationalist political movements and discourses; Muslim vulnerability or acquiescence to, negotiations with, and/or resistance to such discourses and practices; methodologies within the study of Islam, gender/race, the body, and the state; and methodologies for studying the intersections between Islamophobia, gender, femininity, and masculinity. Proposals addressing European contexts are encouraged.