PAPERS Resources

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

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Lesbian-Feminist Issues and Religion Group

Statement of Purpose: 

For over twenty-five years, this Group has employed feminist perspectives to explore the multiple dimensions of lesbian interaction with religion, providing one of the few consistent academic settings where discussions on lesbian issues in religion and feminist perspectives on lesbian issues take place. Whether pursued through religious studies, social-scientific, historical, or theological methods during the approach to the academic study of religion, lesbian-feminist scholarship challenges hegemonic discourse within gay, lesbian, and queer movements that function to privilege queer theory as capable of eclipsing theories and methodologies that are explicitly feminist in the face of entrenched patriarchy and self-consciously lesbian in the face of persistent maleness and heteronormativity. Along with the obvious concern for both historical and contemporary issues pertaining to gender and sexuality, a longstanding feature of the scholarship of this Group has been analysis of race/class/postcolonial critiques. The Group handles important, diverse, and timely themes, providing a theoretical space for probing and further developing the openings and opportunities afforded by changing sociopolitical and theoretical contexts.

Call for Papers: 

Lesbians, Dykes, Feminists and Queers: Who really is part of the "L-Word" today?

For a paper session devoted to Lesbian Feminist Issues in Religion, we are seeking papers that explore what the word “lesbian” means. What are the multiple ways to define and understand the meaning of the L-Word? What are the various points of resonance and dissonance with other identities in the LGBTIQA spectrum? Where is the common ground among lesbian and lesbian-feminists and where is it not? We are searching for papers that explore variance in race, gender and identity, and culture/community, and work that explores ideas of lesbian, feminist, lesbian- feminist, butch lesbian, butch, femme, trans men, bois, butch dykes, as well as lesbian poetics. Is lesbian identity and life expression, religious and/or spiritual identity, different from or similar to other queer identities and life expression, such as gender queer? Queer woman? How is work-life balance specific/non-specific to lesbian, lesbian-feminist identity? What is the methodology specifically of lesbian and lesbian-feminist thought? We welcome any work on this topic.

We also are happy to read submissions or consider panels dealing with any aspect of lesbian, feminist or specifically Lesbian-Feminist Issues in Religion.

In light of our meeting location in Atlanta and the presidential theme of "valuing the study of religion," we propose an author-meets-critics session on Bernadette Barton's Pray the Gay Away: The Extraordinary Lives of Bible Belt Gays (NYU, 2012) for co-sponsorship with the Gay Men in Religion group.

Another focus comes from a quad-sponsored proposal with the Feminist Theory and Religious Reflection Group, the Theology and Continental Philosophy Group, and the Queer Studies and Religion Group. With this focus, we are especially interested in papers that discuss Lynne Huffer’s books Mad for Foucault (Columbia University Press, 2009) and Are the Lips a Grave? (Columbia University Press, 2013) for an “author-meets-critics” panel.

For a co-sponsored session with the Religions, Social Conflict, and Peace Group, and the African Religions Group we ask for papers for a session entitled: Gendered Violence in Africa: The Place of Ritual and Ethics in Justification, Protest, and Adjudication:
We seek papers that explore distinctions and connections between institutional and interpersonal violence related to current issues and debates on all forms of gendered violence in Africa, whether against women, girls, boys, or men, including LGBTIQ persons. Among these forms we include domestic abuse, rape, pimping, sexual harassment, sex-trafficking, stalking, wartime violence, and violence against sexual minorities, whether in prisons or public, in church or secular contexts, for ritual or judicial purposes, etc. In all cases, we seek some tie to religious or ethical reflection in African contexts.

For a possible quad-sponsored session with the Religion and Science Fiction Group, the Gay Men and Religion Group, and the Queer Studies in Religion Group, we invite proposals that examine LGBTIQ sexualities, communities, and cultures in the vast universe of science/speculative fiction; push beyond heteronormative species relationships; reflect on how Science fiction mirrors, comments on, or can advocate for LGBTIQ sexualities and spiritualties. We are especially interested in presentations that put LGBTIQ theories in fruitful dialogue with Science Fiction theory and themes (U-/Dystopias, species evolution, cyber worlds, alternate histories, space opera, techno rapture, AI, transcendence, etc.)

Method: 
PAPERS
Other
Other: 
We will also be co-sponsoring the screening of the film *Al-Nisa: Black Muslim Women in Atlanta's Gay Mecca* with the Religion and Sexuality Group, Contemporary Islam, Queer Studies in Religion, Study of Islam Section, and Afro-American Religious History. We will be in Atlanta and the film-maker is in Atlanta. We will be helping to moderate/preside for this session. For those unfamiliar with the documentary, here is an extended trailer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_rGU_vCi1s Here's a review: http://www.roxie.com/ai1ec_event/frameline-al-nisa-black-muslim-women-atlantas-gay-mecca/ We will also be co-sponsoring the screening of the film Al-Nisa: Black Muslim Women in Atlanta's Gay Mecca with the Religion and Sexuality Group, Contemporary Islam, Queer Studies in Religion, Study of Islam Section, and Afro-American Religious History. We will be in Atlanta and the film-maker is in Atlanta. Marie Cartier, chair of Lesbian Feminist Issues in Religion will preside/moderate a q and a with the film maker and others following the screening. For those unfamiliar with the documentary, here is an extended trailer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_rGU_vCi1s Here's a review: http://www.roxie.com/ai1ec_event/frameline-al-nisa-black-muslim-women-atlantas-gay-mecca/ We will also be co-sponsoring the screening of the film Al-Nisa: Black Muslim Women in Atlanta's Gay Mecca with the Religion and Sexuality Group, Contemporary Islam, Queer Studies in Religion, Study of Islam Section, and Afro-American Religious History. We will be in Atlanta and the film-maker is in Atlanta. Marie Cartier, chair of Lesbian Feminist Issues in Religion will preside/moderate a q and a with the film maker and others following the screening. For those unfamiliar with the documentary, here is an extended trailer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_rGU_vCi1s Here's a review: http://www.roxie.com/ai1ec_event/frameline-al-nisa-black-muslim-women-atlantas-gay-mecca/
Process: 
Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members until after final acceptance/rejection
Leadership: 
ChairSteering Committee