This Unit examines religion and sexuality, broadly conceptualized, and focuses on questions of why and how sex matters for particular religious persons, communities, or traditions. We welcome collaboration with other Program Units doing work in some area of sexuality. Distinguishing this Unit from other Program Units are an emphasis on empirical research and analysis and an intentionally multidisciplinary and comparative religious focus. We especially encourage interdisciplinary approaches, interest in gender (broadly defined), and strong attention to methodological issues. This unit is committed to diversity and inclusivity; pre-arranged panels should reflect gender and racial/ethnic diversity as well as diversity of field, method, context, and scholarly rank as appropriate.
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Religion and Sexuality Unit
Call for Proposals for November Meeting
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Religion and Sexuality unit. We invite proposals for individual papers, paper sessions, and roundtable proposals in all areas of the study of religion and sexuality. We are interested in work which engages diverse contexts, geographies, religions and communities. Proposals should reflect sound engagement with existing scholarship along with innovative theoretical and/or methodological proposals around the study of religion and sexuality. We encourage the submission of coherent pre-arranged sessions, which could include roundtables, pedagogic sessions, or other creative presentation formats.
This year we especially encourage individual and paper sessions that address the following topics along with the 2024 Presidential Theme of “Violence, Non-Violence, and the Margin.”
- Religion and Sexual Surveillance: e.g. In terms of technological surveillance such as Covenant Eyes (software created by evangelical Christians monitoring porn usage online); or in terms of other contextual, political, epistemological, or disciplinary senses of ‘surveillance’.
- Sexuality and Citizenship: Considering conservative policing and policy debates, including those concerning trans, intersex, gender non-conforming persons; creative theologies or philosophies of citizenship drawn from a wide variety of geographies and religious traditions.
- Religion and Sexual Literacy: Considering how knowledge about sex and sexuality is transferred, taught, and framed in religious and educational settings; including work focused on sacred text, ritual, culture(s), social institutions, creative arts, and curriculum.
- Race, religion and sexuality: Including historical, contemporary and creative framings in relation to sexual politics and social justice; theoretical and conceptual innovations when considering these intersections.
Also, in co-sponsorship with Latina/o/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation: We invite papers that consider the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality. We invite papers which engage with a variety of diverse creative genres, religions, and conceptualisations of ‘performance,' 'utopia,' or 'sense(s) of brown'. 2024 is the 25th anniversary of the publication of Disidentifications through we welcome attention to any facet of Muñoz’s work.
Statement of Purpose
Steering Committee Members
Whitney Bond, Chicago Theological Seminary1/1/2023 - 12/31/2028
Susannah Cornwall,1/1/2021 - 12/31/2026
Ash (Aisha) Geissinger, Carleton University1/1/2021 - 12/31/2026
Ahmad Greene-Hayes, Harvard University1/1/2021 - 12/31/2026
Courtney Rabada, Northwestern University1/1/2023 - 12/31/2028