Religious Studies Opportunities Digest – 19 Oct 2012

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In this issue:

  • Journals
  • Books
  • Call for Papers
  • Conferences
  • Jobs
  • Networks

And don’t forget, you can always get involved with the Religious Studies Project by writing one of our features essays or resources pages. Contact the editors for more information.


Paranthropology, Vol. 3, no. 4

Sociology of Religion, vol.73, issue 3,


Warriors of the Cloisters: The Central Asian Origins of Science in the Medieval World

Christopher I. Beckwith

Warriors of the Cloisters tells how key cultural innovations from Central Asia revolutionized medieval Europe and gave rise to the culture of science in the West. Medieval scholars rarely performed scientific experiments, but instead contested issues in natural science, philosophy, and theology using the recursive argument method. This highly distinctive and unusual method of disputation was a core feature of medieval science, the predecessor of modern science. We know that the foundations of science were imported to Western Europe from the Islamic world, but until now the origins of such key elements of Islamic culture have been a mystery.

Sacred Killing: The Archaeology of Sacrifice in the Ancient Near East

Edited by Anne Porter and Glenn M. Schwartz

Eisenbrauns, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-57506-236-5

List Price: $59.50

Your Price: $53.55

What is sacrifice? How can we identify it in the archaeological record? And what does it tell us about the societies that practice it? Sacred Killing: The Archaeology of Sacrifice in the Ancient Near East

investigates these and other questions through the evidence for human and animal sacrifice in the Near East from the Neolithic to the Hellenistic periods. Drawing on sociocultural anthropology and history

in addition to archaeology, the book also includes evidence from ancient China and a riveting eyewitness account and analysis of sacrifice in contemporary India, which engage some of the key issues

at stake. Sacred Killing vividly presents a variety of methods and theories in the study of one of the most profound and disturbing ritual activities humans have ever practiced.


CFP: Fall narratives: an interdisciplinary perspective 18th-19th June 2014, University of Aberdeen, Scotland

As the 340th  anniversary of John Miltons death approaches, we seek to explore the theme of the Fall in a diverse, interdisciplinary context.

The conference, which is organised with the intention of leading to a publication of proceedings, will examine the concept of the Fall across a range of disciplines and languages. The temporal scope extends from antiquity to contemporary times.

We welcome proposals with research interest such as, but not limited to, Literature, Religion, Languages, History, Philosophy, Psychology, Art, Film and Visual Culture, Cultural Studies and economics.

Potential topics include (but again, are not limited to) the following:

* Milton and Paradise Lost

* Concept of moral and philosophical Falls

* Fall of angels (and demons)

* Adam and Eve

* Religious falls

* Literary falls

* Cinematic falls

* Contemporary falls: in finances, politics, media, sports, entertainment etc.

* Fall of empires: historical, economical, cultural.

* Fall of regimes

* Fall of ideologies, ideas, world views, political/ religious movements, etc.

* The linguistics of falling

  • The psychology of falling

Abstracts of approximately 200 words should be sent to:

Dr Zohar Hadromi-Allouche and Dr ine Larkin

Deadline for submission is 31st March 2013.

Should you have questions about the conference or the submissions, please contact the organisers at

z.hadromi-allouche [at]

a.larkin [at]

CFP: Scientiae 2013: Disciplines of Knowing in the Early Modern World

Deadline for Abstracts: 20th October 2012

Conference to be held at University of Warwick (UK), 18th-20th April 2013

Conference website:

Paper and panel proposals are invited for Scientiae 2013: the second annual conference on the emergent knowledge practices of the early-modern period (ca. 1450-1750).  The conference will take place on the 18-20th of April 2013 at Warwick University in the UK, building on the success of Scientiae 2012 (Simon Fraser University, Vancouver) which brought together over 100 scholars from around the globe.

The premise of this conference is that knowledge during the period of the Scientific Revolution was inherently interdisciplinary, involving complex mixtures of fields and objects that had not yet been separated into their modern “scientific” hierarchies. As such our approach needs to be equally wide-ranging, involving Biblical exegesis, art theory, logic, and literary humanism; as well as natural philosophy, alchemy, occult practices, and trade knowledge. Scientiae is for scholars working in any area of early-modern intellectual culture, with the emergence of modern natural science serving as a general point of reference. The conference offers a forum both for the sharing of research and the sparking of new investigations, and is open to scholars of all levels.

The keynote speakers will be Peter Dear (Professor of the History of Science at Cornell University) and Stephen Clucas (Reader in Early-Modern Intellectual History at Birkbeck, University of London).

Topics and questions may include, but are by no means limited to:

— Theological origins and implications of the new science

— Nature and scripture: which interprets which?

— What do images contribute to our understanding of early modern knowledge?

— Genealogies of “reason”, “utility”, and/or “knowledge”

— Humanism and the scientific revolution

— Paracelsianism, Neoplatonism, alchemy: where are we now?

— What were the relations between the new science and magic and demonology?

— Health and medicine: separable economies?

— Morality and the natural world: an on-going relationship?

— Period conceptions and practices of intellectual property

— Poetics and science: habits of thought?

— Renaissance philosophy and the development of a “new” cosmology and


— Information and knowledge: a clear divide?

— Science and Medicine:  Global Knowledges?

— Early-modern literature and the new knowledge: friends, or foes?

— Advances or reversals of period logic/dialectic

Other prominent speakers expected at Scientiae include: Constance Blackwell, Isabelle Charmantier, Penelope Gouk, Raphael Hallet, Judy Hayden, Kevin Killeen, Sachiko Kusukawa, Vivian Nutton, Brian Ogilvie, Stephen Pender, Claire Preston, Jennifer Rampling, Anna Marie Roos and Richard Serjeantson.

Abstracts proposing individual papers of 25 minutes should be between 250 and 350 words in length. For panel sessions of one hour and 45 minutes, a list of speakers (with affiliations) and 500-word abstract is required. Roundtable discussions or other formats are acceptable.

The deadline for abstracts is the 20th October 2012.

All submissions should be made at, if you

have any questions please contact the conference convenor David Beck-

D.C.Beck [at]<mailto:D.C.Beck [at]>

32nd ISSR Conference


Conference website:

Call for papers:

Deadlines: October 31th 2012:

-Abstracts of proposed papers for the Thematic Sessions (STS) and Working Groups (WGT), to be sent to the SESSION ORGANISER (S)

-Abstracts of proposed papers for the Thematic Sessions of the New Researchers Forum (NRF) and Miscellaneous papers (MPL) for the NRF, to be sent to the Session Organiser

-Abstracts of Miscellaneous Papers (MPL) to be sent to the GENERAL SECRETARY

The conference lanaguages are English and French.

Important notice: Organisers of Thematic Sessions (STS) and Working Groups (WGT) and Presenters of papers have to be mambers of the International Society for the Sociology of Religions (ISSR). Each participant may only present one paper at the conference.

Submission details available in the full call for papers:

CFP: The Quran and Islamic Tradition in Comparative Perspective unit of the ISBL welcomes proposals for both individual papers and pre-arranged panels at the international meeting at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, July 7-11, 2013.

Suggested topics might include, but are not limited to:

*Prophets and miracles in Islam, Judaism, and Christianity – comparative perspectives

*Vocational journeys in Islamic and other religious traditions

*Parallels to biblical, Jewish, and Christian tradition in the Quran and Islamic literature

*Relationships between Jewish, Christian, and Muslim exegetical traditions

*The various discursive expressions of intercommunal exchange and relations, including both dialogue and polemic

*Islam in European discourse; Muslim cultural, religious, social, and political life in the West

We especially welcome papers of a theoretical or methodological nature that explore the ramifications of the comparative study of the Bible and Jewish and Christian tradition alongside the Quran and Islamic tradition.

Proposals for panels or individual papers can be submitted online at

The deadline for submission of proposals is February 1, 2013. Please note that membership in the Society of Biblical Literature is required in order to submit a paper proposal.

Please contact the program unit chairs for more information: Michael Pregill, Dept. of Religious Studies, Elon University (; Zohar Hadromi-Allouche, Divinity and Religious Studies, University of Aberdeen

(z.hadromi-allouche [at]


AHP 15: Rgyal rong Tibetan Life, Language, and Folklore in Rgyas bzang Village

Description:  The editors of Asian Highlands Perspectives (AHP) are pleased to announce: AHP 15: Rgyal rong Tibetan Life, Language, and Folklore in Rgyas bzang Village by G.yu ‘brug and CK Stuart This study of Rgyas bzang (Jizong) Village includes a brief summary of G.yu ‘brug’s life, local languages and location

Contact: kevin.stuart [at]

Announcement ID: 197929

Alternative Enlightenments: an interdisciplinary conference

Date: 2013-04-26

Description:  How distinct is the concept of Enlightenment from the era of European history long taken to have discovered or invented it? This conference proposes an examination of Enlightenments in the plural, welcoming both revisionary accounts of the Age of Enlightenment and explorations of

Enlightenment in o …

Contact: wcoker [at]


Announcement ID: 197689

Authoritative Traditions and Ritual Power in the Ancient World

The aim of this colloquium is to explore how authoritative texts, culture heroes, and authors were invoked ritually for cursing, protection, and divination in the ancient and late antique Near Eastern and Mediterranean world. The speakers represent a wide range of specializations in ancient ritual practice, including Egyptian, Near Eastern, Greek, Roman, Jewish, and Christian materials.

Monday, October 22, 2012

8:30 AM – 5:30 PM

306 Royce Hall



8:30-8:35am: Welcome by Ra’anan Boustan (UCLA) and Jacco Dieleman (UCLA)

8:35-8:45am: Joseph E. Sanzo (UCLA), “Introductory Remarks:

Authoritative Traditions and Ritual Power in the Ancient World”

Session One

8:45-9:30am: Jacco Dieleman (UCLA), “Cultural Memory and Claims to Authority in Ancient Egyptian Magic”

9:30-10:15am: Jeremy D. Smoak (UCLA), “Yhwh’s Shining Face and the Ritual Logic of the Iron Age Judean Amulets from Ketef Hinnom”

10:15-10:30am: Coffee Break

Session Two

10:30-11:15am: Michael Swartz (The Ohio State University), “Past and Future in Jewish Divination Traditions”

11:15am-12:00pm: Ra’anan Boustan (UCLA) and Michael Beshay (UCLA):

“Biblical Kingship, Imperial Ideology, and Ritual Power in The Testament of Solomon”

12:00pm-1:30pm: Lunch Break

Session Three

1:30-2:15pm: Joseph E. Sanzo (UCLA), “Beyond the Label: A New Approach to the Relationship Between ‘Christian’ Traditions and Ritual Power in Late Antiquity”

2:15-3:00pm: Theodore de Bruyn (University of Ottawa, Canada): “Genre, Tradition, Ritual, Culture, and Social Location: The Case of the Charitesion”

3:00-3:45pm: Jacques van der Vliet (Leiden University, the Netherlands), “Courting the Angels: Celestial Liturgy in Late-Antique Egyptian Magic”

3:45-4:00pm: Coffee Break

Session Four

4:00-4:45pm: Sarah Iles Johnston (The Ohio State University), “Myth as an Authoritative Discourse in Magic”

4:45-5:30pm: David Frankfurter (Boston University), “The Great, The Little, and the Authoritative Tradition in Magic of the Ancient World”

Cost: RSVP requested, please contact: Joseph E. Sanzo, sanzojsanzo [at]

For more information please contact

Johanna Romero

Tel: (310) 825-1181

romero [at]


Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building,

London School of Economics, Saturday 1 December 2012


Or post a booking form (attached) and a cheque payable to ‘Inform’ to Inform, Houghton St., London WC2A 2AE. (; 020 7955 7677).

Tickets (including buffet lunch, coffee and tea) paid by 12 November 2012 cost  £38 each (£18 students/unwaged).

NB. Tickets booked after 12 November 2012 will cost £48 each (£28 students/unwaged).

A limited number of seats will be made available to A-Level students at £10 before 12 November 2012 (£20 after 12 November). A party of 5 or more A-Level students from one school can include one member of staff at the same price.


Job Title: Junior Position in Ministry Studies

Employer: Harvard University

Application Deadline: Unspecified

Job Detail:               

University of Saskatchewan – Asian History in Gender and Sexualities

University of Sydney – Director, Sydney Southeast Asia Centre

Worcester State University – Assistant Professor East Asian History

(Tenure Track)

Woolf Institute – Academic Director, Centre for the Study of

Muslim-Jewish Relations

University of Sydney – LECTURER IN PHILOSOPHY

Department of Theology and Religion

Durham University

Chair in the Study of Religion,4025564854&key=61234847&c=769898514822&pagestamp=setmhqahnftztruqvm


Possible Name: Folklore Archives’ Network (FAN)

It would be our pleasure to invite representatives of archives as well as other individuals interested in folklore archiving to join the network by contacting the co-ordinator Ave Goršič by e-mail at <> by December 1, 2012. Your suggestions concerning the archive network are warmly welcome.

Participants of the round table: Ave Goršič (Estonia), Risto Järv (Estonia), Anu Korb (Estonia), Svetlana Kosyreva (Russia), Kati Mikkola (Finland), Mari Sarv (Estonia), Janika Oras (Estonia), Rabindranath Sarma (India), Lina Sokolovaitė (Lithuania), Svetlana Tsonkova (Bulgaria), Ergo-Hart Västrik (Estonia).

In the era of digital revolution and under the circumstances of economic depression, folklore archives in different countries face and share similar problems. The need for a more intense cooperation in the field of folklore archiving was underlined at the round table of the 85th anniversary conference of the Estonian Folklore Archives in Tartu on September 24–25, 2012, which brought together archivists and researchers from Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia. Participants of the round table suggested launching an international network of folklore archives that would bring together both institutions (representatives of folklore archives) and individuals whose research is related to folklore archives.

Some of the ideas concerning the network included:

  •  Website with links to participating archives and researchers, providing preliminary information in a common foreign language (English) on archives, researchers/archivists and their topics, and about the accessibility of digitised collections of different institutions.

  •  Network meetings and online groups to discuss possibilities for joint financing, cooperation in the field of collecting campaigns, technical upgrading, etc.

  •  Joint seminars, conferences and panels in international conferences.

  •  Newsletter in English, published and disseminated electronically.