Religious Studies Opportunities Digest – 1 Feb 2013

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In this issue:

  • Future Podcasts
  • Books
  • Journals
  • Call for papers
  • Conferences
  • Jobs


The following are some of the themes which will be covered in future podcasts

  • Sociotheology and Cosmic War
  • Religion and Globalization
  • Religious Experience
  • Pilgrimage/Tourism



Kuna Art and Shamanism<>

An Ethnographic Approach

Paolo  Fortis

Known for their beautiful textile art, the Kuna of Panama have been scrutinized by anthropologists for decades. Perhaps surprisingly, this scrutiny has overlooked the magnificent Kuna craft of nuchukana–wooden anthropomorphic carvings–which play vital roles in curing and other Kuna rituals. Drawing on long-term fieldwork, Paolo Fortis at last brings to light this crucial cultural facet, illuminating not only Kuna aesthetics and art production but also their relation to wider social and cosmological concerns.  Exploring an art form that informs birth and death, personhood, the dream world, the natural world, religion, gender roles, and ecology, Kuna Art and Shamanism provides a rich understanding of this society’s visual system, and the ways in which these groundbreaking ethnographic findings can enhance Amerindian scholarship overall. Fortis also explores the fact that to ask what it means for the Kuna people to carve the figure of a person is to pose a riddle about the culture’s complete concept of knowing. Kuna Art and Shamanism immerses readers in this sense of unity and opposition between soul and body, internal forms and external appearances, and image and design.

University of Texas Press

March 2013 298pp 9780292743533 HB £37 pre-order now for only £25.90 when you quote CS0113KAAS (30% discount) when you order<>

*Offer excludes the USA, South America and Australasia.


Theology and Science, vol 11, no.1


CFP: Muslim women in change: Aspirations, Desire and Leisure

Location: Louisiana

Date: 2013-02-09

Description: Call or Participants for Panel in MESA 2013 47th Annual Meeting of the Middle East Studies Association October 10-13, 2013 – New Orleans, Louisiana Panel Title: Muslim women  in change: Aspirations, Desire and Leisure Panel Abstract: The focus of this panel is on the contemporary relationships Muslim

Contact: ss935 [at]

Announcement ID: 200814

CFP: extended paper submission deadline of FEBRUARY 15, 2013 for the upcoming conference, “The Pure Land in Buddhist Cultures: History, Image, Praxis, Thought” (May 31 – Jun 2, 2013, University of British Columbia). Individual paper and panel proposals on any aspect of pure land thought, from any region of the world or Buddhist tradition, are welcome.

In addition, we are delighted to offer several travel grants for graduate students and young scholars, announce our keynote speakers, and further schedule details.

Travel Grants for Graduate Students and Young Scholars

Several travel packages are available for current graduate students and young scholars (under 40 years of age) without fulltime positions. These packages offer $300-$1,500 (CAN) in travel costs, depending on the distance traveled  and include free accommodation for 3 nights. Eligibility: (1) paper accepted for publication at the conference; (2) enrolled in a graduate program or pursuing research without a fulltime position. Interested individuals whose papers are accepted may apply for a travel grant by March 15, 2013.  Decisions will be made by March 31.

There are two sources of funding for the grants, and if you are selected as recipient of one of the two funds, that of the International Association of Shin Buddhist Studies (IASBS), you will be asked to register as member of IASBS by April 15, 2013.  (Student membership fee is waived for all first year, and from the second year, the fees are US$20 outside Japan or 2,000 yen in Japan.) Special thanks for the generous donation of travel funds for IASBS members by Rev. and Mrs. Shodo Baba of Chiba, Japan. And, special thanks to The Tung Lin Kok Yuen Canada Foundation, for travel funds for presenters from other scholarly associations.

Keynote Speakers

Profs. Georgios Halkias (Visiting Associate Researcher, Oxford University), a specialist of Tibetan and Himalayan Buddhism, and Masahiro Shimoda (Professor, Tokyo University), a specialist of Indian and Mahayana Buddhism, will deliver the keynote addresses.


Registration will open in the mid-afternoon of Friday, May 31, and the first panels and keynote, in the late afternoon and evening. The conference will close in the afternoon of Sunday, June 2, and dinner provided for those able to join. *All lunches and dinners are included in the registration fee.

Please find the full Call For Papers appended below.


Jessica Main

Tung Lin Kok Yuen Canada Foundation Chair | Buddhism and Contemporary Society Program |

The University of British Columbia | Vancouver Campus

CK Choi Building, 1855 West Mall | Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z2

Phone 604 822 9305 | Fax 604 822 5207 |

The Pure Land in Buddhist Cultures: History, Image, Praxis, Thought

University of British Columbia | Friday, May 31 to Sunday, June 2, 2013

Abstracts due: extended deadline February 15, 2013

Papers due: May 23, 2013

Conference website:

Pure Land Buddhist traditions have been some of the largest and most influential in Buddhist history, and remain so to the present day. Moreover, the very idea of a purified, perfect land of a buddha echoes throughout Buddhist text and praxis. Most often, this buddha is“Immeasurable Light” or “Immeasurable Life,” who created a pure land far to the west of our own world. But there are many others. This conference aims to examine sectarian traditions of Pure Land Buddhism as well as the “pure land” within Buddhism generally. As this conference is jointly-sponsored by associations connected to Pure Land Buddhist traditions in two countries, it is a unique chance to approach pure land expansively, in terms of its long history, global reach, and diverse regional and trans-regional expressions–whether in or across what are today known as China, Korea, Vietnam, Japan, Canada, and so on. The hope is to increase knowledge and scholarly exchange about the multifaceted development of pure land in Buddhist cultures. Papers are welcome on any aspect of pure land, type of Pure Land Buddhism, any region or historical period, and from any methodological or disciplinary perspective.

Papers might address questions such as:

  • How did the praxis, thought, and social forms concerned with the pure land and its central buddha emerge historically?

  • How do we best describe and analyze pure land forms in visual culture, whether embedded in text, in art and architecture, or in spatial and meditative imaginaries?

  • And, in an increasingly globalized world, how do we understand the connections between various kinds of Pure Land all over the world and the challenges that each faces?

Please submit a 100 word abstract and short bio to email us at by February 15, 2013 for consideration. For panels,

The jointly-sponsored “The Pure Land in Buddhist Cultures” will be the 3rd Annual Conference of the Buddhism and Contemporary Society Program (University of British Columbia, funded by The Tung Lin Kok Yuen Canada Foundation), and the 16th Biennial Conference of the International Association of Shin Buddhist Studies (hosted by the IASBS North American District).

CFP: SCSC Panel 2013: Picturing Christ’s Body (24-27 October, San Juan; Deadline for Submissions 1 March)

Date: 2013-03-01

Description: CALL FOR PAPERS: PICTURING CHRIST’S BODY Sixteenth  Century Society and Conference San Juan, Puerto Rico, October 24-27, 2013 The sixteenth century was marked by radical change in conceptions about the mediative value of religious images in Western Christian culture. The complexity of the circumstan …

Contact: christsbodyscsc [at]

Announcement ID: 200791

CPF for the annual meeting of the Dutch Association for the Study of Religion which will take place at the University of Leiden 24-25 October 2013 and have as theme Lived Religion: Studying Religious Practice

Outline of theme

The 2013 Annual Meeting of the NGG focuses on lived religion, that is religious practice such as it is actually enacted and religious identities and beliefs such as they are actually held. The opposite of lived religion is thus not ‘dead religion’, but ‘prescribed religion’, the religion of catechisms, canons, and creeds. We invite papers that explore the lived religion of groups and individuals, including the unofficial and everyday dimensions of the great religious traditions, non-institutional and post-Christian religion (e.g., ‘new age’, neo-paganism), and tensions between lived and prescribed religion. The conference welcomes anthropological, sociological, cognitive, and historical perspectives, and we especially encourage papers of a methodological or theoretical nature. The conference aims to advance the study of lived religion by critically and systematically reflecting on the core question ‘how do we approach and theorise lived religion’?

We invite proposals for papers, panels, and posters on lived religion from all theoretical perspectives within the study of religion. In addition, PhD and MA students are given the possibility to present their ongoing research either with a poster or in a paper session that is not related to the conference theme. Deadline for all proposals is 1 June 2013. See detailed calls for papers, panels, and posters below.

We are honoured to present two distinguished keynote speakers:

  • Prof.Dr. Ronald Hutton, “Lived Religion in History, History in Lived Religion: The Case of Contemporary Paganism” (speaker confirmed; title provisional)

  • Dr. Nathal Dessing, “How to Study Everyday Lived Religion”

A. Call for individual papers

Each individual paper will be given a total of 30 minutes, i.e. 20 minutes for presentation and 10 minutes for discussion.

We invite proposals from various disciplinary perspectives (the academic study of religion, sociology, anthropology, history, etc.) on lived religion. Topics can include (but are not restricted to):

§      Unofficial and everyday religious practices within great religious traditions

§         Practices, beliefs, and identities in contemporary, non-institutional religion (e.g., ‘new age’, neo-paganism)

§         Tensions between lived and prescribed religion, between specialists and laity, and between theological correctness and theological incorrectness

§         Theories of religion focusing on action, activity, or practice (e.g., Weber, Geertz, Bourdieu, Riesebrodt, and Whitehouse)

§         Processual approaches to religion: Practicing, experiencing, cognising, and feeling as the core of religion

§         Discursive practices as lived religion

§         Rituals and religious acts: ritual theory and ritual dynamics

§         Religion and material culture

§         Lived religion as a theoretical concept

§         Lived religion in the past and the historical context of contemporary lived religion

§         The interlace of lived religion with media, leisure, entertainment, fiction, and play

§         The internet as a new site of religious practice and the methodological challenges it poses

§         The study of social organisation beyond the religious group: network analysis, field work, and more

§         The methodology of studying religious experience (including altered states of consciousness): seeking a third way between going native and scanning brains

Candidates should submit both an abstract (of max. 150 words) for the programme book and a more detailed proposal (of max. 400 words). Deadline for submitting abstract and proposal for an individual paper is 1 June 2013. Abstracts and proposals should be emailed to NGG secretary Markus Altena Davidsen (

B. Call for PANELS

 Groups of scholars are invited to submit 3 to 5 papers on similar topics as one coherent panel (1.5–2 hours length, depending on the schedule). Panels should fit into the perspectives outlined above.

 Deadline for submitting a panel is 1 June 2013. When submitting a panel, please include in one document both individual abstracts and proposals for the papers (respectively max. 150 and 400 words), as well as a panel abstract (max. 150 words) for the programme book and a more detailed panel proposal (of max. 400 words). Abstracts and proposals should be emailed to NGG secretary Markus Altena Davidsen (

C. Call for papers and posterS for off-theme PhD and MA student session(s)

PhD students are invited to propose papers for the perspectives outlined above. Additionally, both PhD students and MA students are cordially invited to submit a poster or a paper for a separate off-theme session. This can be a great opportunity for MA students to report on the results of their MA thesis and for PhD students to present some of their preliminary conclusions.

Each individual paper will be given a total of 30 minutes, i.e. 20 minutes for presentation and 10 minutes for discussion.

Posters should be A1 size and should not include too much text. Make sure to include pictures, graphs etc. to enhance readability. We suggest that posters are accompanied with a number of handouts for people to take. Unfortunately, we cannot help with the printing of the poster. Most universities, however, do offer templates and/or facilities for making conference posters.

Abstracts for posters and papers for the off-theme session(s) (max. 150 words) together with a more detailed proposal (of max. 400 words) should be sent no later than 1 June 2013 to NGG secretary Markus Altena Davidsen (

Practical Details

Organisers. The Dutch Association for the Study of Religion (Nederlands Genootschap voor Godsdienstwetenschap) in cooperation with Leiden Institute for Religious Studies, University of Leiden.

Organising committee. Prof.Dr. Kocku von Stuckrad (chair, NGG), Markus Altena Davidsen (secretary, NGG), William Arfman, (PhD representative, NGG), Dr. Wim Hofstee (Leiden Institute for Religious Studies).

Venue. Leiden Institute for Religious Studies, University of Leiden.

Time. 24–25 October 2013. The conference will begin around 14.00 on Thursday the 24th and end around 16.00 on Friday the 25th.

Deadline. Deadline for all proposals is 1 June 2013. Proposals should be sent to the secretary of the Dutch Association for the Study of Religion, Markus Altena Davidsen (m.davidsen [at]

Registration. Registration costs will be kept as low as possible (and depend on further funding that the organisers applied for). Discounts will be available for members of the NGG and for students. Registration includes coffee/tea breaks, the conference dinner on Thursday evening, and a lunch on Friday. The organisers will help with finding accommodation in various categories. Please check the website for updates and further information.

Homepage. For updates and information, please see the website of the NGG at or follow us on Twitter at @NGG_nl.



Date: 2013-02-08

Description: On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the   establishment of our Faculty of Theology, we are organizing an International symposium on Religious Studies and Global Peace, to be held in Konya, the city of the great mystic thinker, Mawlana Jalal al-Din Rumi. Submission deadline for abstracts is 08 Feb

Contact: konyasymp2013 [at]


Announcement ID: 200709

International Student Congress on GENDER

Date: 2013-04-25

Description: Students who are interested in Social Sciences will meet,discuss and learn so much things about Gender in this congress,İstanbul,2013 April.This congress FAS2013,bring

together leading students from around the world in order to discuss the questions relevant to the field of gender analysis.



Announcement ID: 200797


Context Travel – Lecturing Opportunities in China and Japan

Professor – Philosophy

University of Aberdeen

closing date: 18 Feb

Research Fellow – History

University of St Andrews

closing date: 20 Feb

Postdoctoral Research Positions at the Interdisciplinary Center for Intercultural and Indigenous Studies, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Employer: Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Application Deadline: 2013-5-3

Job Detail:               

Postdoctoral Fellowship – International Humanities

Brown University, Religious Studies Department