You are here

Qur'an Unit

Call for Proposals

The Qur'an Unit welcomes papers on all aspects of the Qur'an, its role in the lives of Muslims, its tradition of commentary, liturgical use, aesthetics and material forms, and its influence in the world generally.

At our last business meeting, we decided not to specify any particular topic associated with the Qur’an and its role in the lives of Muslims past and present except for a special initiative listed below. In general, we welcome proposals that represent the full range of how the Qur'an can be approached in terms of academic methods, as well as the full range of ways in which the Qur'an is interpreted and interacted with in Islamic tradition.

Evaluation of proposals to the Qur'an Unit are done by the Steering Committee through anonymous evaluation based on the quality and clarity of the proposal without regard to issues of the presenter's age, status in the profession, gender, religious or ideological affiliation or other factors beyond the quality of the proposal. Regardless of topic, each proposal should reflect an interaction with past and current scholarship and should advance the academic knowledge of aspects of the Qur’an. Also, proposals should describe presentations that reasonably can be made with the time limits imposed by the session lengths given us by the AAR. This means that a paper should be limited to fifteen minutes to allow the maximum number of participants and time for questions and discussion. When considering a proposal, please pay attention to the presentation format so that the presentation will be accessible to individuals with visual and/or auditory impairments. It is the aim of the Qur'an Group to make our presentations accessible and available to the greatest possible number of members of the American Academy of Religion.

For the 2020 annual meeting, we are also inviting papers for a special joint session of the Qur’an Unit and the Traditions of Eastern Late Antiquity Unit on Translation, Transmission and Intertextuality. We are hoping to be able to include papers that reflect the problems and methodologies encountered by the members of the Traditions of Eastern Late Antiquity Unit and the Qur’an Unit. If you have ideas for a contribution, please correspond with the co-chairs of the two units as soon as possible to help us put together a strong and interesting panel. All proposals for this special initiative as well as for all other papers submitted to the Qur’an Unit will be evaluated through the anonymous evaluation in PAPERS.

Statement of Purpose

This Unit seeks to provide a forum for comprehensive scholarly discussion of the Qur’an, its commentaries, and its role in Muslim and world societies through a variety of disciplinary and methodological perspectives. We particularly welcome student-scholars and scholars from all areas of the academy to help us achieve our goals of promoting an understanding of the Qur’an.


Steering Committee Members



Review Process

Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members until after final acceptance/rejection

Review Process Comments

The unit's proposal to acceptance rate is an area we are working on. The accepted papers were strong this time, but our competition with IQSA at this meeting prompted some to deliver to that outside group rather than to the AAR. We were able, however, to attract members of IQSA to our panels as audience.