Author Archives: Jim

Humour and Religion Network

Dear friends and colleagues,

We are delighted to launch the Humour and Religion Network aiming to bring together and connect both scholars and practitioners who work at the intersections of humour and religion.

This is a niche but growing area of research and practice exploring in different ways the multifaceted links between humour and religion. Here are a few examples:

The Humour and Religion Network aims to foster the exchange of ideas and forge interdisciplinary and international collaborations between humanities researchers and social scientists; interfaith leaders and social action stakeholders; as well as comedians and humourists, who all share a common interest in cross-cutting issues at the intersections of humour, satire and comedy, with religion, faith and belief. Some of the themes that may be of particular interest to the members of this Network include:

  • – Humour about religion in the context of blasphemy/free speech
  • – Humour and religion in popular culture
  • – Laughter and interfaith engagement
  • – Humour traditions in different religions
  • – Practices and lineages of religious humour, past and present
  • – Scriptural humour
  • – Philosophies and theories of religious humour
  • – Social science approaches to humour and religion

As part of this initiative, we are also aiming to eventually build a public archive of works by scholars who have published on humour and religion in the last 15-20 years. Our goal is to create a comprehensive, organised and searchable open archive of the study of humour and religion, which we hope will become a port of call for anyone interested in past and ongoing research projects and practical work at the intersections of humour and religion. It will be an ongoing work-in-progress.

The Network will further serve as a portal for discussion and information exchange about humour and religion, including calls for papers and upcoming conferences publications, public events, comedy work and the like.

To become a member (recommended!) you can simply register with Yahoo Groups and ask to join the Network by going to: https://groups.yahoo.com/humour-religion

In case you only want to receive e-mails from group members, you can send an e-mail from your personal account to: humour-religion-subscribe@yahoogroups.com and confirm the electronic response.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Roald Dijkstra, Ph.D.         

Lina Molokotos-Liederman, Ph.D.           

Bernard Schweizer, PhD

New E-Book: “The Fourth Secularisation” by Luigi Berzano

The Fourth Secularisation: Autonomy of Individual Lifestyles, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Routledge Focus, 2019, 82 pages

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • 1 From a single style to multiple styles
  • 2 Spiritual revolution: Multiplication of forms
  • 3 The fourth secularisation
  • 4 Sense of religion in the secular age

Description

  • This book examines recent forms of secularisation to demonstrate that we are now witnessing a “fourth secularisation”: the autonomy of lifestyles. After introducing two initial secularising movements, from mythos to Logos and from Logos to Christianity, the book sets out how from Max Weber onwards a third movement emerged that practised the autonomy of science. More recently, daily life radicalises Weber’s secularisation and its scope has spread out to include autonomy of individual practices, which has given rise to this fourth iteration.
  • The book outlines these first three forms of secularisation and then analyses the fourth secularisation in depth, identifying its three main dimensions: the de-institutionalisation of the religious lifestyle; the individualisation of faith; and the development of new social forms in the religious field. These areas of religious practice are shown to be multiplying partly as a result of the general aestheticization of society. Individuals, therefore, aspire to personal styles of life with regard to beliefs and the choice of their own religious practices.
  • This book will be of great use to scholars of religious studies, secularisation and the sociology of religion.

https://www.routledge.com/The-Fourth-Secularisation-Autonomy-of-Individual-Lifestyles-1stEdition/Berzano/p/book/9780367260682

Introduction to Islamic Codicology

We are once again collaborating  with the Islamic Manuscript Association’s Introduction to Islamic Codicology course on 23–27 September 2019 at Cambridge University Library, Cambridge.

This intensive five-day course will introduce the study of Islamic manuscript codices as physical objects, or the archaeology of the Islamic book. The lectures will provide an overview of writing supports, the structure of quires, ruling and page layout, bookbinding, ornamentation, tools and materials used in book making, the palaeography of book hands, and writing Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) manuscript descriptions. During hands-on sessions, participants will examine Islamic manuscripts from Cambridge University Library’s collections and complete a series of practical exercises on codicological description.

If you are interested then please contact the Association or apply via their website.

Regards
Neil Cunningham
Programmes Manager
Centre of Islamic Studies
University of Cambridge

Symposium/Masterclass on Research on Religion, Gender, and Sexuality

Saturday 29 June 2019
At The University Of Newcastle Sydney Cbd Campus
55 Elizabeth St
Sydney

This one-day symposium brings together postgraduate students and early career researchers working in the interdisciplinary area of religion, gender and sexuality to explore specific issues pertaining to study in this area.

Masterclass 1 (9.30-1pm) Methodological and Ethical Issues in the Study of Religion, Gender and Sexuality
Leaders: Professor Emma Tomalin, University of Leeds; Dr Luke Gahan, La Trobe University

  • This masterclass will explore interdisciplinary approaches to and methodologies in the study of religion, gender and sexuality. The first session will look at the theory of intersectionality when applied to the research and analysis of religion, gender and sexuality in non-western societies. The second session will look at methods and ethics in researching LGBTQI cohorts and issues. Participants will be encouraged to draw on insights from their own research in order to contribute to the discussion, and there will be a pre-symposium reading requirement.

Masterclass 2 (2.00-3.30) Safety in the Research Process
Leader: Dr Kathleen McPhillips, University of Newcastle

  • Researching across gender issues in the study of religion can expose us to challenging and difficult literature and field sites for which understanding and preparation is essential. This Masterclass will explore some of the pitfalls in the research process, the importance of setting up a safe research environment for participants and researchers and the importance of self-care. The class will introduce a trauma informed model of research practice and will draw upon the expertise of a number of experienced researchers, early career researchers and current HDR students who have worked in challenging research areas. Participants will be invited to share their experiences and there will be a pre-symposium reading requirement.

Discussion (4-5pm)

  • A final session will address the importance of mentoring for HDR and early career researchers as well as helpful tips about the move from post graduate student to researcher and academic.
    This event is fully catered for and morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea is provided.

Registration Costs:

  • HDR Students $40
  • Early Career Researchers and part-time academics $50
  • Full time Academics $100

To Register and pay, go to https://www.aasr.org.au/2019-gender-religion-sexuality-symposium

Sponsored By:

  • The Women’s Caucus Of The Australian Association For The Study Of Religion
  • The School Of Humanities And Social Sciences, University Of Newcastle
  • Religion And Society Research Cluster, Western Sydney University
  • Institute For Ethics And Society, Notre Dame University, Sydney
  • Alfred Deakin Institute, Deakin University, Melbourne

CFP: 4th ISA Forum of Sociology

RESEARCH COMMITTEE 22: SOCIOLOGY OF RELIGION

Call for Paper Proposals
4th ISA Forum of Sociology
July 14-18, 2020
(Paper proposals are due at GMT midnight on Sept 30, 2019)

“Challenges of the 21st Century for Sociology of Religion

Program Coordinators:
Eloísa Martín, United Arab Emirates University, UAE
Juan Cruz Esquivel, University of Buenos Aires/ CONICET, Argentina
Roberta Bivar Carneiro, Federal University of Pernambuco, Brazil

The debate on religion, its role, its development, and its future has been intense, extensive and sophisticated during the last few decades. Religion is both a central phenomenon itself and a key variable that can be used to explain economic, social, and political phenomena.  Both facets require continuous in-depth research. In recent years, many sociologists have begun to identify limits to the current approach to religious phenomena, and especially to the definitions of religion developed in the West. A number of authors have extended this critique to the ways sociologists currently explain and interpret “religion” in the 21st Century. Though still emerging, such accounts have opened new paths by which sociologists of religion can face both the empirical and theoretical challenges of our era.

Please consider proposing papers for the following Sessions: (click on the link to see session details)

The ISA CONFEX website will be open for paper proposals until September 30, 2019 24:00 GMT. Sessions may only be submitted through the CONFEX site.  Programme coordinators cannot include papers sent by email or include papers submitted after the CONFEX system is closed.  Surf to http://bit.ly/2Gj9N0N to enter the CONFEX site.

Please, note that you must be an RC-22 member to submit a paper proposal.

Please address your questions to any of the Program Coordinators:

The Association for the Sociology of Religion Annual Meeting

Our Program Committee is hard at work planning for our 2019 meeting in New York, “Engaging Religion in a Contested Age.” You can look forward to two engaging joint ASA/ASR sessions, an insightful Presidential Address by our President, Paula D. Nesbitt, a thought-provoking Furfey Lecture with Peter Beyer, and plenty of socializing opportunities during our evening receptions. In fact, our welcome reception on August 11 will be a joint reception with the ASA Religion Section.

Our meeting will be held at the Park Central New York Hotel located at 870 Seventh St., just a few steps from the ASA hotel. Rooms with king beds will be $185/night, and rooms with two double beds will be $205/night. You may make your hotel reservations by clicking here. Please make your reservations before July 19, 2019 to guarantee that you receive the low ASR room rate. IMPORTANT NOTE: if the online reservation system gives you any problems, please email me. Some nights are filling up fast, so please make your reservation ASAP. If your search includes a night that is already sold out, you will get an error message. Please email me if this happens, and I will assist as best I can.

Annual Meeting registration is now available! Simply log into your ASR account and click the pre-register for a conference box. Remember that everyone on the program needs to pre-register for the annual meeting by July 1. Even if you aren’t on the program, pre-registration offers some savings.

Paper Abstract Submissions for our the ASR 2019 Annual Meeting in NYC extended to May 6!

All submissions are accepted through the Member Portal on the ASR website. Log in to your ASR account to submit a paper abstract. The submission link is in your ASR Member Portal and NOT on the general website or the Annual Meeting page. If you are not currently a member, you will need to become a member in order to log into the ASR website and submit a paper abstract. If you join the ASR or renew your membership, it may take up to a day for me to update your membership. Please email me if you have any trouble submitting your abstract.

If you have any questions about the program content of our meeting, please contact our 2019 Program Chair, Holly Folk, at holly.folk@wwu.edu.

PhD Scholarships on “The African Diaspora and Pentecostalism in Australia”

Dear colleagues,

We are offering 2 PhD scholarships (1 based in Sydney and 1 in Perth) as part of the Australian Research Council (ARC) funded project: “The African Diaspora and Pentecostalism in Australia: New Perspectives on Materiality, Media and Religion.”

This project investigates the new African Diaspora in Australia and its embrace of Pentecostalism, particularly after arrival. The African community in Australia has often been associated with poor settlement outcomes, and has also been on the receiving end of a racialised moral panic. The project aims: to understand the range of challenges African-Australian communities faces; to determine why so many of their members join Pentecostal churches; to investigate how Pentecostal churches support these communities’ translocal and transnational mobility and sense of belonging, and; to contribute to policy efforts to improve outcomes for African new arrivals in Australia.

Within this larger project, the PhD candidates will conduct ethnographic research with Pentecostal churches in Australia, and with African Diasporas in the country. Both projects will investigate questions such as: how do Pentecostal churches support/hinder processes of settlement and ‘integration’? How do some Pentecostal megachurches generate transnational religious fields – ones which may harness resources from branches elsewhere in the world? And what impact does all of this have on Australian cities’ post-secular social landscapes?

We welcome applicants from a range of backgrounds: anthropology, sociology, religious studies, African studies, Migration studies or a related field. In particular, the project is suitable for candidates with strong interests in the intersections of migration and religion. Applications from students of African heritage are especially welcomed.

Deadline: 30 June 2019

For more details, see

  1. https://www.westernsydney.edu.au/graduate_research_school/grs/scholarships/current_scholarships/current_scholarships/ssap_the_african_diaspora_and_pentecostalism_in_australia (Religion and Society Research Centre, School of Social Sciences and Psychology, Western Sydney University, Sydney)
  2. http://www.scholarships.uwa.edu.au/search?sc_view=1&id=8941 (, at the School of Social Sciences, University of Western Australia, Perth).

Prof Cristina Rocha
Director of Religion and Society Research Cluster |School of Social Sciences and Psychology
Western Sydney University
President: Australian Association for the Study of Religion

CFP: "Public policies and the production of religious difference"

The Conference of the Dutch Association for the Study of Religion (NGG) that will be held in Groningen on 30 October – 1 November 2019 is now open.

The theme of the conference is “Religion and the Production of Difference”.

Julia Martínez Ariño is convening a panel on “Public policies and the production of religious difference”:

Panel title: “Public policies and the production of religious difference” This panel will explore how religious difference is produced, reproduced, challenged and/or ignored by public policies as well as how, inversely, notions of religious difference inform policymaking. The panel welcomes papers examining the production of religious difference, and religious-secular and religious-spiritual distinctions by public policies in fields such as urban planning and public space, education, security, immigrant integration, etc. Attention will also be given to how policy-driven categories of religious difference are received by the stakeholders and impact on individuals and groups. Papers analysing policy definitions of acceptable and non-acceptable religiosity in various social contexts and policy fields and papers interested in the reception and consequences of those definitions are also welcomed. Some of the questions that the panel will address are the following:

  • What are the social imaginaries and policy ideas underlying public policies in relation to religion and what are the resulting categories of difference?
  • How do different actors, religious or not, receive and react to those categories and processes of differentiation?
  • What are the (differential) implications of these processes and categories for different religious and non-religious groups and individuals?

We are interested in covering a wide range of geographical locations, theoretical perspectives and empirical approaches.

Panel convener: Julia Martínez-Ariño, University of Groningen Please, send your abstracts of no more than 250 words and a short biographical note of 100 words max. to: j.martinez.arino@rug.nl . Deadline: 1 June 2019

Scholars based in Dutch universities and abroad are invited to submit their abstracts. Deadline: 1 June 2019.

For more information, please visit the conference website: http://www.godsdienstwetenschap.nl/index.php…

Centre for Religion, Conflict and GlobalizationFaculty of Theology and Religious Studies University of GroningenNGG – Dutch Association for the Study of Religion

The Donner Institute Prize for Outstanding Research into Religion 2019

The Donner Institute for Research in Religious and Cultural History hereby calls for nominations for its annual prize for outstanding research into religion. The nominations should be submitted by 31 May 2019. The prize announcement is posted on our website: https://www.donnerinstitute.fi/en/current-3/nominate-a-candidate-for-the-2019-donner-research-prize/

Åbo/Turku, 15 April 2019
Ruth Illman, Director
The Donner Institute