PAPERS Resources

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

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Transnational Religious Expression: Between Asia and North America Seminar

Statement of Purpose: 

Our seminar aims to bring together scholars working on different traditions and regions to participate in a sustained conversation about the translation, transmission, and transformation of religious expressions between Asia and North America. We are interested in ideas and practices that exceed institutional, national, cultural, and ethnic boundaries, and use “transnational” to call attention to the boundaries crossed and recrossed—through mediated and contested spaces—between different cultural contexts as religious ideas, technologies, and actors move across the Pacific and around the globe. In this way, “transnational” is meant to be both a descriptor of the complex realities of religious transmission and a promising analytical space to address related processes such as transculturation, adaptation, exploitation, appropriation, (de)territorialization, and glocalization. Many of these processes erode the ground on which normative national and religious taxonomies depend, and we are interested on sharing theories and approaches less oriented toward reifying discrete traditions and more capable of analyzing the hybridity and fluidity of religious expression in the global age.

Call for Papers: 

Our seminar's second year will critically engage the theme of Border Crossings: Mutability & Multidirectionality. We invite analyses of specific case studies with respect to the movement of people, institutions, spaces, ideas, practices, and materials between Asia and North America. Potential topics include migration, missions, pilgrimage, religious tourism, diaspora communities, conversion, and multiple religious identities. We particularly encourage theoretical engagement with respect to larger multidirectional processes and issues of mutability in transnational religion that complicate institutional, national, cultural, spatial, and ethnic boundaries as religious ideas, technologies, and actors move between Asia and North America. Papers will be posted to the AAR website in advance of the annual meeting, so the seminar can focus on discussion among participants and observers. Submissions by committed seminar participants will be given preference before final selection, but this is an open call, and we welcome all potential contributors. Please contact the seminar chairs with any questions.

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