PAPERS Resources

AAR Annual Meeting
Atlanta, GA
November 21-24, 2015

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Indigenous Religious Traditions Group

Statement of Purpose: 

This Group focuses on theoretical, methodological, and conceptual issues in the study of indigenous religious traditions the world over. Though particularly interested in interdisciplinary approaches to the study of indigenous religions, we are primarily grounded in the “history of religions” approach as it concerns the analysis of indigenous traditions. The Group is also concerned with the interface of indigenous religious traditions and modernity, colonial and postcolonial conditions, and local and global forces that shape the practice of indigenous traditions and their categorizations.

Call for Papers: 

We welcome paper and panel proposals on methodological and theoretical debates and approaches in the study of indigenous religions, particularly relating to any of these themes:

1) We invite proposals for a panel on the problem of “'religion” in the study of indigenous and polytheistic traditions. This includes considerations of other critical terms such as "spirituality,” "sacred,” “tradition,” “culture,” ”animism,” “Pagan," “shaman,” etc. and indigenous perspectives on 'religion' or equivalents (or lack of). We welcome papers on other problematic terms in the study of indigenous and polytheistic religions, too. We may run two sessions on this theme, with one of them a proposed joint session with the Contemporary Pagan Studies Group.

2) Contemporary media and indigenous religious traditions. This includes digital media, textualization and language, social networking, issues of voice and 'visual sovereignty', media ethics, and so on.

3) Responses to genocide, ethnic cleansing and removal, imperialism, the nation-state.

4) For a quad-sponsorship with the African Diaspora Religions Group; Religion, Medicines and Healing Group; the Native Traditions in the Americas Group: we invite paper or session proposals that focus on how conceptions of indigeneity and diasporic identity are implicated in efforts to heal individuals, communities, and nations in the context of loss, displacement, and historical trauma.

5) For a possible co-sponsorship with the Critical Theory and Discourses on Religion Group: We invite papers that examine discursive formation of categories in the study of religion, e.g., spirituality, possession, and revitalization. We especially invite proposals treating categories developed/used in History of Religions scholarship on Africa, (e.g., “fetish”).

Method: 
PAPERS
Process: 
Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members during review, but visible to chairs prior to final acceptance or rejection
Leadership: 
ChairSteering Committee