PAPERS Resources

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

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Session Index (PDF)

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Exhibitor Index and Exhibit Hall Maps (PDF)

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Kierkegaard, Religion, and Culture Group

Statement of Purpose: 

This Group seeks to explore the significance of the religious thought and ethics of Kierkegaard for contemporary culture in its various aspects — social, political, ecclesiastical, theological, philosophical, and aesthetic.

Call for Papers: 

Kierkegaard: Perspectives on Teaching and Learning
In the spirit of AAR's 2015 theme, “valuing the study of religion,” we invite proposals on Kierkegaard's perspectives on the place of values in teaching and learning. For Kierkegaard, teaching and learning entail not only epistemic, moral, and aesthetic values, but also religious values, all aimed at developing authentic human being and human relations. In pursuit of this aim, Kierkegaard reflected upon a wide range of ways of teaching and learning, including (among other things): self-examination; Socratic forms of teaching and learning; indirect communication; and teaching and learning "without authority." Papers might address how these ways of teaching and learning exemplify both the value of faith and the epistemic, moral, and aesthetic values that Kierkegaard viewed as central to faith.

We also welcome proposals that consider Kierkegaard's valuing of faith aimed at authentic human being and human relations in the context of Atlanta's civil and human rights traditions.

Kierkegaard and Buddhism
For a co-sponsored session with the Yogācāra Studies Group and the Buddhist Philosophy Group, we invite proposals that address methodological and substantive issues concerning Kierkegaard and Buddhism. Possible topics include comparative approaches to issues such as the nature of the self/non-self, the scope and limits of the first-person perspective, the role of suffering in understanding the human condition, and the possibility or impossibility of seeing Kierkegaard's implicit ontology and Buddhism in phenomenological terms.

Religious Conversion and Søren Kierkegaard
For a co-sponsored session with the Religious Conversions Group, we invite proposals that explore themes of conversion as they relate to the work of Søren Kierkegaard. We are particularly interested in papers that consider the narrative or literary aspects of religious conversion, the role of imagination and will in conversion, and formulas of religious conversion. One might, for example, consider the relationship between the Kierkegaardian “leap” and conversion, Kierkegaard’s concepts of transitions and stages in relation to conversion, or ecclesiological consequences of conversion as presented in Kierkegaard’s corpus. Authors might draw upon scholarship that explicitly or implicitly addresses these themes, whether from the standpoint of conversion studies, or from Kierkegaard studies. This session aims to bring together scholars of conversion and Kierkegaard in order to broaden conversation in both fields.

Kierkegaard and the Staging of Desire: A Discussion of Carl Hughes' Book on Rhetoric and Performance in a Theology of Eros
In conjunction with the Bible, Theology, and Postmodernity Group, we are hosting a pre-arranged panel discussion on Carl Hughes' Kierkegaard and the Staging of Desire (Fordham University Press, 2014). In this book, Hughes argues that for Kierkegaard, theology is desire, and that Kierkegaard uses rhetorical language and a sense of place and performance to "stage" desire for God, particularly in discourses in which the Christian liturgy is central. In doing so, Hughes' study raises questions about the meaning of said desire and its object for Kierkegaard, and about the significance that Kierkegaard places upon the dramatic or theatrical in communicating desire for God. Hughes' study, however, also has implications for the constructive theologian and religious thinker today, who might easily ask what it means to desire God against the backdrop of modernity and postmodernity; why the Bible is significant for articulating such desire; and what it means to perform that desire in a modern and postmodern context in which the ones doing the desiring or affected by the desiring are not homogeneous.

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