February 10, 2012

Call for Papers: Special Issue of Religion and Gender

Call for Papers for special issue on ‘Gender, Religion and Migration’ in new e-journal Religion and Gender http://www.religionandgender.org

The special issue on Gender, Religion and Migration will look at the intersectional dimension of gender, ethnicity and religion where religion in particular plays a central role in providing a sense of belonging for migrants and represents a source of identification during the migratory experience. The special issue will focus on the ways in which gender roles are constructed and reproduced through religion within migrant communities in urban contexts and brings together leading scholars in the field of migration to explore how geographical mobility shapes gendered religious identities. For too long social sciences and migration studies have paid insufficient attention to the importance of religion in the everyday lives of many migrants and Levitt’s (2008) call for more ‘empirical, grounded’ research on migration and religion aims at filling this particular gap in the literature .

Mobilizing religion may serve a range of diverse purposes during the migratory experience and, indeed, migration may in turn shape the different ways in which religion is reproduced on an every day basis if compared with the country of origin of the worshippers.  Religion can also provide a trans-national source of identification; for example, it may play a significant role in enabling migrants to imagine themselves within collectivities that span beyond the nation-state.  In other words, religious worship may fulfil many functions for migrants, not only spiritual, but also material and social such as civic participation and commitment towards the parish for church goers (Levitt 2008). Hence, for migrants in particular, religion can potentially provide a means for both maintaining and expressing continuity of faith and practice while negotiating integration within a new environment (Stanczak, 2006).

The special issue On Gender, Religion and Migration will build on the symposium at Middlesex University, held in 2011, to explore comparisons and contrasts across different religious communities which could include for example, Muslim, Christian, Jewish and Hindi, etc.

This collection of articles aims to bring together empirical research from different academic disciplines, including sociology, geography and anthropology and using a range of methods to engage with and research different religious communities. We welcome papers that present a comparative approach to studying religion in migration.

In particular, we are looking for papers that tackle the following:

•       Comparisons across religious groups

•       Intersectional dimensions of gender, ethnicity and religion

•       Construction of gender through religion in urban contexts

•       Religion as a trans-national source of identification and the role of gender in negotiating local integration through religion

•       Religion as a source of civic engagement differently negotiated in migrant women and men

•       Role of religious organizations in providing integration opportunities while ensuring continuity of social practices with the country of origins for migrant women and man

•       Role of religion in the intergenerational negotiation of belonging in the host country  and outcomes in challenging traditional gender roles

If you are interested please send a 200 word abstract, along with a short biographical note, to Dr. Ryan and Dr Vacchelli at the addresses below by Monday 27 February:

Please note that if your abstract is accepted, full papers will be needed by June 2012.

Dr. Louise Ryan and Dr. Elena Vacchelli, Middlesex University,

Contact: l.ryan@mdx.ac.uk and e.vacchelli@mdx.ac.uk


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