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Contemporary Islam Unit

Call for Proposals

The Contemporary Islam Unit is soliciting proposals for the 2023 AAR annual meeting on any topics related to the study of Islam in the contemporary period. This year we have particular interests in the following topics:

  • Labor and racial capitalism including:
    • The roles and experiences of contingent faculty and graduate student workers in Islamic Studies
    • Muslims and chattel slavery in the Americas
    • Forcible labor and patterns of migration in the 21st century
    • Instances of hyper-capitalism in the Muslim world, on display, for example. in the World Cup in Doha 
  • Social justice movements in Asia and Africa and global solidarity
  • Climate change and environmentalism, such as the 2022 UN Climate Change Conference (COP27) in Egypt and the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) in the UAE
  •  Muslim engagement with arts and aesthetic discourses
  • Prearranged author-meets-critics style panels on a recently published books


Pre-arranged panels should reflect gender and racial/ethnic diversity as well as diversity of field, method, and scholarly rank as appropriate. We also encourage pre-arranged panels to take a broad and inclusive approach to what counts as “Islam,” recognizing the theological diversity within Islam and among Muslims; this includes but is not limited to Shi‘a, Ahmadiyya, and the Nation of Islam.


If your proposal is accepted and you agree to be on the program, we expect you to show up to participate in the Annual Meeting, barring unforeseeable exceptional circumstances. Please note that it is the policy of all Islamic Studies program Units to ban no-shows at the Annual Meeting from the program for the following two years.

Statement of Purpose

The mission of this unit is to provide a venue for discussing emerging issues and developments within contemporary Muslim societies and Islamic Studies.


Steering Committee Members



Review Process

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