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Comparative Studies in Religion Unit

Call for Proposals

We invite papers on the topics below. Submissions for panels or roundtables not listed here are also welcome.

• Comparative Studies in Hinduism and Judaism: The Spiritual Genius of the Guru and the Rebbe? Contact: Yudit Greenberg (

• Multisensory Ritual Modalities. Contact: Eric Huntington (

Indigenous Religions and Indigenous Christianities. Contact: Thomas Seat ( – potentially co-sponsored by the World Christianity unit.

Saints in Divided Societies. Contact: Aaron Hollander ( – potentially co-sponsored by the Comparative Approaches to Religion and Violence unit

Visual Materials and New Media as the Products of Scholarship. Co-sponsored by the Religion, Film, and Visual Culture unit (see that unit's Call for Proposals for details). Contact: Eric Huntington (

• Implicit and Explicit Comparison in Religious Studies Scholarship: A Collaborative Experiment in the Use of Buddhist Categories. Contact: Christopher Jensen (

The Place of Comparison/Comparativists at the AAR. Co-sponsored by the Religion in Premodern Europe and the Mediterranean unit. Contact: David Freidenreich ( or Oliver Freiberger (

• Comparison as Site of Self-Reflective Inquiry: How our Disciplinary Identities Shape our Comparative Interests at the AAR and Beyond. Contact: Maria Turek (

• Author Meets Critics: Oliver Freiberger, Considering Comparison: A Method for Religious Studies. Contact: David Freidenreich (

• Teaching the Saints through Comparative Pedagogy. Contact: Barbara Zimbalist (

• What's the Point? A Roundtable of the Practical Effects of the Scholarly Comparison of Religion. Contact: Nikolas Hoel (

Statement of Purpose

This Unit provides the opportunity for significant cross-traditional and cross-cultural inquiry. We traditionally solicit paper sessions that provide occasions for comparative inquiry seriously engaging two or more religious traditions around a common topic and we ensure that critical reflection is given to the conceptual tools therein employed. We welcome co-sponsorship opportunities with other AAR units.

This Unit has a listserv (CompRel), which is used primarily for announcements, calls for papers, and discussions about panel proposals. If you wish to subscribe, please send a request to


Steering Committee Members




We do not consider individual paper submissions, only roundtables or panels.

Review Process

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

Review Process Comments

We believe that anonymous review is important initially, but the chairs review proposer names at the final decision-making stage in order to make sure that a range of institutions, ranks, religious traditions, research foci, and research methods are included in each year's panel offerings.