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New Religious Movements Unit

Call for Proposals

The New Religious Movements Unit welcomes all papers that address research pertinent to the study of marginal, emergent, “alternative,” innovative, "invented," or minority religions. In particular, we encourage submissions on the topics:

  • There is currently a glut of podcasts and “true crime” documentaries on NRMs. What is causing this current preoccupation? What are its consequences for NRMs or teaching undergraduates about NRMs? What is the role of this media in reifying categories like “sex cult?”
  • We seek papers related to disaffiliation and the role of apostates. In particular we are interested in a current surge of “apostate narratives” in the popular media.
  • In keeping with the 2022 meeting’s location in Denver, we seek papers on the International Church of Cannabis. We also seek papers on the intersection of NRMs with drugs and entheogens broadly.
  • We seek papers on NRMs and Covid-19 vaccination: What theological and legal arguments are NRMs making either to seek exemptions from vaccination mandates or to encourage them?
  • In light of the spate of wildfire, hurricanes, and other weather-related or geological events, we are soliciting papers on new religions and environmental catastrophe, weather, or climate.


We seek proposals are sought on Korean new religious movements in Korea, East Asia, and North America; contemporary Korean new religions and their influential predecessors; media representation of Korean NRMs; and Korean new religions’ practices in response to the pandemic.

Statement of Purpose


Steering Committee Members



Review Process

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