The unit promotes scholarship – from specialists and non-specialists alike – that critically engage the thought and influence of Friedrich Schleiermacher (1768-1834). We encourage constructive, historical, and textual analyses that open new lines of inquiry into Schleiermacher’s oeuvre and contribution to contemporary discussions in theology, religious studies, philosophy, ethics, and hermeneutics.
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Call for Proposals
(1) Theological System-Building: Doctrine, Method, and Context (co-sponsored with the Nineteenth Century Theology Unit)
Friedrich Schleiermacher’s Glaubenslehre, first published in 1821/22, was a turning point that ushered in the modern development of theological system-building, even among theologians who disagreed with his approach. As part of their efforts to expand on and engage with Schleiermacher’s method and work, theologians wrote systematic works on both sides of the Atlantic. Those texts also reflected the role of religious consciousness for scientific theology.
The Nineteenth Century Theology Unit and Schleiermacher Unit invite papers on all topics related to the theme of theological system-building in a global context from 1800 to 1914. We welcome submissions representing philosophical, theological, and historical approaches. For example, proposals might examine comparisons of thought systems or theology as a system or analyze specific issues such as theology as science, philosophical influences, the social contexts of theological systems, and syntheses of system-building processes.
(2) Exploring Theological Genres (co-sponsored with the Tillich: Issues in Theology, Religion, and Culture Unit)
Systematic theology and the notion of systematicity have come under significant criticism in recent years, with many scholars noting the limitations and strictures of modern theological systems. For this session, we invite proposals that consider the various genres or literary forms that theological writing takes and the potential impacts such theological genres might have. We welcome in particular perspectives that attend to how culture, history, and religious traditions shape climate catastrophe and social crises. For instance, proposals might:
• explore sermons, meditations, personal narratives, lecture notes, or oral histories as sources of theological reflection on environmental justice
• develop original creative or constructive theological work
• constructively and/or critically engage the theological writings of Friedrich Schleiermacher or Paul Tillich
• consider the impact of theological poetics
• explore the literary forms that accompany emancipatory and liberative theological perspectives
(3) Roundtable Discussion: Revisiting Embodiment; Or, What Theologians and Religious Educators can Learn from the Opioid Crisis
Presiding: Thandeka Thandeka, Love Beyond Belief, Inc.
Darcia Narvaez, University of Notre Dame
John Cobb, Jr., Center for Process Studies and Process & Faith
Daniel Boyarin, University of California
The Schleiermacher Unit is committed to diversity and inclusivity. Pre-arranged sessions or panel proposals should reflect diversity of gender and/or race and ethnicity. Diversities of rank, method, and sub-discipline are also highly encouraged.