The Religion and Disability Studies Unit is committed to maintaining the visibility, viability, and value of the experience and politics of disability as they relate to the study and practice of religion. We promote engagement between disability studies theory and the study of religion, examine the role of disability in lived religious experience and theology, and consider the historical and contemporary role of disability in diverse religious traditions, texts, and cultures. As intersectionality becomes an increasingly critical hermeneutic in the academy, we encourage robust dialogue and collaboration with other program units involved with disciplined reflection on religion.
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Religion and Disability Studies Unit
Call for Proposals
We invite papers in response to the 25th publication anniversary of Nancy Eiesland’s pioneering work The Disabled God (Abingdon Press, 1994), in which she issued the challenge to encounter and embrace the disabled God, and to recover symbols and rituals from a disability justice perspective. Has her challenge been met, does it need to be clarified or critically reiterated, has it fostered the risky imagination she urged us to seek? What ongoing implications might her work have for perennial topics of religious reflection, such as salvation, atonement, or the nature of faith? We welcome engagement from a range of disciplines, methods, and religious traditions.
For a book panel on theology, ethics, and praxis, we invite engagements with Brian Brock’s Wondrously Wounded: Theology, Disability, and the Body of Christ (Baylor University Press, 2019), and Grant Macaskill’s Autism and the Church: Bible, Theology, and Community (Baylor University Press, 2019).
For a possible co-sponsored session of the Comparative Approaches to Religion and Violence Unit, the Religion and Disability Studies Unit and the Moral Injury and Recovery in Religion, Society, and Culture Unit:
We invite proposals at the intersection of psychology, religion, trauma, and disability on the threats, experiences, and care for those experiencing trauma effected by violence and/or moral injury, particularly persons with disabilities, veterans, survivors of diverse violences, and other vulnerable populations.
For a possible co-sponsored session of the Religion and Ecology Unit, Religion and Disability Studies Unit, Class, Religion, and Theology Unit, and Religion and Migration Unit:
The global climate crisis affects people who are already most susceptible to environmentally linked degradation. We invite papers addressing the devastating impact of climate change and connected ecological crisis on vulnerable peoples, including persons with disabilities, the working class, indigenous peoples, communities of color, migrants, people living unhoused and/or with food insecurities, and others. We welcome engagement from a range of disciplines, methods, and religious traditions.
Statement of Purpose
Steering Committee Members
Barton, Sarah Jean, Western Theological SeminaryMember Since: 2020
Hancock, Lisa, Southern Methodist UniversityMember Since: 2018
Hodges, Blair, Brigham Young UniversityMember Since: 2015
Stevens, Bruce, Charles Sturt UniversityMember Since: 2017
Wilder, Courtney, Midland UniversityMember Since: 2018