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Martin Luther and Global Lutheran Traditions Unit

Call for Proposals for November Meeting

The Martin Luther and Global Lutheran Traditions Unit welcomes any paper, panel, or roundtable proposals engaging scholarship on Martin Luther, Lutheran Theology and Ethics, and Global Lutheran Perspectives and Traditions.

For the 2024 American Academy of Religion Meeting in San Diego, our Unit especially welcomes paper, panel, and roundtable proposals engaging any of the following themes:


Open Call

Our 2024 Call for Papers firstly welcomes an Open Call for paper proposals, roundtable or panel proposals related to the research interests of this unit. Our unit’s interests and topics range widely—important recurring themes, doctrinal loci, ongoing historical movements and contexts, crucial figures in Lutheran history and tradition, intersectional and ethical analysis, books or research projects of interest to the wider academic community, critiques, research horizons, global contexts, and emergent traditions.  The Martin Luther and Global Lutheran Traditions Unit considers any papers or panel proposals related to the research interests of this Unit. We welcome proposals from scholars who wish to share their current research. In panel or roundtable proposals, the Unit strongly encourages organizers be attentive to gender and racial diversity.


Settler Colonialism, Land, and Global Lutheranism

Our Unit calls for papers, roundtable, or panel sessions that think about Global Lutheranism's entanglement with Settler Colonialism.

  • Lutheranism and Indigenous Contexts
  • Lutheranism and the violent legacy of residential schools
  • Missiology
  • Lutheran theological justifications for or challenges to settler colonialism
  • Lutheranism in particular global contexts of settler colonialism
  • Native and Indigenous Theologies


Lutheran Interfaith, Interreligious, and Comparative Theologies

In his Circling the Elephant (Fordham, 2020), theologian John Thatamanil asks of his reader, “Might we begin to think of religious diversity as a promise rather than a problem?”  This call takes up this invitation and line of thought for Lutheran theologies and Global Lutheran Traditions, in particular.  We call for papers, panels, or roundtable session proposals that ask into the promise of how Lutheran theologies engage and think alongside their religious and non-religious neighbors.  How might Lutheran approaches frame and engage Religious Difference?  What are the features of a Lutheran Comparative Theology? What resources, intersectional challenges, or possibilities do Global Lutheran Traditions possess for engaging in interreligious theological thinking and practice?  How does Lutheran theology and particular loci therein creatively transform in dialogue with other religious or non-religious traditions? Where does Lutheran interfaith work happen in everyday life and to what ends?  How can interreligious theology seek to address Antisemitism and Islamophobia?  How can such work engage in addressing common ethical challenges and systems of oppression, such as climate injustice, racism, sexism, etc.?


Violence, Nonviolence, and the Other

We call for papers, panels, or roundtable session proposals that address the 2024 Presidential Theme, “Violence, Nonviolence, and the Other.” We welcome proposals engaging recent scholarship on Martin Luther’s relationship to violence, nonviolence, political resistance, and other related themes:

  • Historical writings of Martin Luther related to violence, nonviolence, and political resistance (E.g., On Temporal Authority; Whether Soldiers, Too, Can Be Saved; Against the Robbing and Murdering Hordes of Peasants)
  • Scholarship related to Martin Luther’s responses to the German Peasants’ War/The Peasant’s Revolt of 1524-25 and this history’s contemporary import
  • Lutheran theological interpretations of violence, and how they challenge traditional theological loci in Lutheran thought
  • Global Lutheran Traditions’ or figures’ involvement in violence, nonviolence, and/or political resistance
  • How do Global Lutheran Traditions relate to pacifism and the perceived marginalization of Christian pacifism.
  • Global Lutheran Traditions and relations to Peace Church Traditions, including Lutheran-Mennonite Ecumenical Dialogue related to the Presidential Theme
  • Other topics or relevant texts


For a potential co-sponsorship with the Bonhoeffer: Theology and Social Analysis 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.  We look for papers that think of Bonhoeffer's legacy in Global Lutheranism, theological context, influences, and contemporary constructive proposals.  



Call for Proposals for Online June Meeting

The State of Lutheran Thought and Scholarship: For the June virtual meeting, our Unit plans to organize a pre-arranged session of editors and authors of important recent books in Lutheran theology and scholarship on Martin Luther and Global Lutheran Traditions. This session seeks to give an account of the current state of scholarship on current Lutheran thought. What does it mean to write scholarship on Martin Luther and Global Lutheran Traditions today? What are common emergent themes and concerns? What unique contributions or ethical difference does Lutheran analysis make? What are the horizons of Lutheran thought and why?

Statement of Purpose

This Unit seeks to provide an avenue for a comprehensive conversation on both Lutheran history and thought in the global context. In so doing, it is able to draw on an immensely rich tradition that goes far beyond Lutheran parochial interests as it includes the relationship to other Christian traditions as well as cultures in the global South.


Steering Committee Members


Review Process

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