You are here

Religion and Migration Unit

Call for Proposals

The Religion and Migration Unit seeks individual paper proposals and panel proposals (presider, three presenters, and respondent). The Religion and Migration Unit is committed to diversity and inclusion.

Panel session proposals should incorporate gender diversity within the panel; diversity of race/ethnicity, and rank are also highly encouraged. The 2023 Religion and Migration Unit Call for Papers for the Annual Meeting to be held in San Antonio, TX welcomes proposals on the following themes:

Stages of Migration and Religion: Scholars have distinguished the process of migration into three stages: (1) pre-migration, (2) transit, and (3) post-migration in order to understand what migrants experience at different stages of migration. But can we truly understand migration as an “event-of-transit,” which has an identifiable structure of “pre-migration” and “post-migration”? What are the benefits and limitations of examining migration through identifiable stages? What are the possible implications for religion or how does religion affect these stages of migration?

New Languages of Migration: Across many disciplines, we have used metaphors of displacement, exiles, border crossings, nomads, transnationalism, aliens, diaspora, exodus, asylum seekers, and urban flight to describe, capture, and reflect “a world in motion” as well as “people on the move.” What are new images, metaphors, concepts, and keywords to examine the dynamic and complex process of how religion shapes and is shaped by these migrants, the places they have left behind, and the ones they enter into?

Teaching Religion and Migration: What are some of the issues and/or challenges teaching religion and migration in public/private colleges and universities? In what ways have we progressed and/or experienced positive change in the classroom/field?

For Co-Sponsorship with Asian North American Religion, Culture, and Society Unit:

Asian Religions in North America: Focusing on communities that have been historically underrepresented, including South Asian, Southeast Asian, East Asian, Pacific Islander, and non-Christian communities. How or in which ways have religious traditions been constructed, reconstructed, or represented in North America by immigrant/migrant/refugee communities? What emphases, innovations, or concerns do we see in Asian-American diaspora communities? What if anything has been lost or gained in transition?

Engagement with recent publications, such as Melissa Borja’s  Follow the New Way: American Refugee Resettlement Policy and Hmong Religious Change are also welcome.

Finally, we offer an open call for any other topics dealing with religion and migration, especially proposals that address theoretical and methodological issues at the intersection of migration and religious studies. We are also interested in hosting a book panel, so please feel free to submit panel proposals for recently published books on Migration and Religion (author, panelists, and respondents).

Statement of Purpose

This Unit is a forum in which scholars working on religion and migration from multiple perspectives can interact across methodologies, religious traditions, and regions. We solicit papers addressing the religious practices, experiences, needs, and beliefs of migrating peoples who adapt to new environments and impact their societies of origin and destination. We understand religion and migration broadly, from the religious communities of rural migrants in regional cities to the new understandings of religion that second-generation children construct in order to make sense of their ethnic identities or ethical responses of receiving communities. If you are interested in furthering the discussion on religion and migration, please join the AAR Religion and Migration Group on Facebook.


Steering Committee Members



Review Process

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