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Boston College Biennial Conference on the History of Religion

26 September, 2017 11:08
Boston College Biennial Conference on the History of Religion

Call for Papers

Date: March 23-24, 2018

Venue: Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA, USA

Proposal Submission Deadline: November 15, 2017

From illuminated manuscripts to Buddhist stupas to the Pope’s twitter account, the representation of religion has taken many forms over time. Further, the question of who represents religion — lay people or priests, men or women, believers or non-believers — has been a central debate.

This conference seeks to explore the varied formats, means, and meanings behind how religion is represented in art, culture, the media, and practice. By exploring themes ranging from authority and politics to pedagogy, reception and format, this conference will examine the history of religious representation in public and private spheres from the medieval to the modern period.

We are particularly interested in paper or panel proposals from the field of public history.

- How is religion represented through museums, monuments, and historic sites?

- How have authors or directors crafted their representations of religion in popular books or movies?

- How do different religions represent their own histories, through their digital presence?

We welcome proposals for individual papers and full panels, from both established scholars and graduate students in all academic disciplines, on topics that consider the representations of religion throughout history. We hope to include papers that explore these questions in Christian and non-Christian contexts alike, and encompass a wide geographic scope.

Suggested themes for papers include, but are not limited to,

  • Secular representations of religion
  • Religious art and architecture
  • Visual and written interpretations of other religions
  • Public history and pedagogy
  • Material culture
  • Race and religion
  • Gender and sexuality
  • Politics and the public sphere
  • Religious and secular media
  • Religious practice and ritual

Individual paper proposals should include a 300-word proposal, paper title, and a one-page CV. Panel proposals for two to three presenters should include a 250-word panel abstract (including panel title), a 300-word proposal for each individual paper (including paper title), and a one-page CV for each presenter. Please submit your proposals to the conference committee at

Further conference details including a schedule, registration form, and travel information will be available at a later date.


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