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Bonhoeffer: Theology and Social Analysis Unit

Call for Proposals for November Meeting

The Bonhoeffer: Theology and Social Analysis Unit invites paper proposals on themes related to Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s life, theology, and legacy.


As 2024 marks the 80th anniversary of Bonhoeffer’s provocative 1944 prison writings, we are especially open to proposals that bring his letters and papers from prison into conversation with contemporary theological and ethical discourses.


Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a dedicated educator: confirmation teacher, pastor, university lecturer, underground seminary leader, and mentor to many. Therefore, we also welcome papers that engage one or more aspects of “Bonhoeffer and Education,” including papers on Bonhoeffer the teacher, on teaching Bonhoeffer, on the role of teachers and institutions of higher education today, as well as on the many varieties of what Bonhoeffer called “ethics as formation.”


Additionally, as we anticipate an AAR annual meeting on the heels of an election year, we welcome proposals that either engage Bonhoeffer through lenses afforded by public and political theology or that draw on Bonhoeffer to offer constructive engagement with questions of politics and political engagement.

Possible co-sponsored session with the Martin Luther and Global Lutheran Traditions Unit

Bonhoeffer scholarship has a long history of engagement with questions related to 2024 AAR President Jin Y Park’s conference theme, “Violence, Nonviolence, and the Margin.” We are pleased to welcome proposals that offer new constructive explorations of these themes in relation to Bonhoeffer’s theological, practical, and ethical legacy, especially as these might engage the above themes of Bonhoeffer’s prison theology, education, or political theology.

Statement of Purpose

This Unit seeks to explore the historical and contemporary interface between theology and public life within the context of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s legacy in theology. Together with professional societies affiliated in the study of Bonhoeffer’s life and thought, the Unit has explored a variety of topics from medical ethics to political life in a global context.


Steering Committee Members


Review Process

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