CALL FOR PAPERS, German Studies Association, Religious Cultures Network (Abstracts due Feb 1, 2017)

CJ Jones's picture
Call for Papers
October 5, 2017 to October 8, 2017
Georgia, United States
Subject Fields: 
German History / Studies, Islamic History / Studies, Jewish History / Studies, Literature, Religious Studies and Theology


CALL FOR PAPERS – Religious Cultures Network 

 GSA, Forty-First Annual Conference of the German Studies Association (

Atlanta, Georgia, October 5-8, 2017


The Religious Cultures Network is pleased to announce the following calls for papers for sessions at the 2017 GSA conference in Atlanta, Georgia. We seek 15- to 20-minute papers, in English or German. Please send an abstract (max. 250 words) and a brief CV or bio that includes institutional affiliation by February 1, 2017 to
1. German and Religious Cultures
We invite papers that address the place of “minority” religions in culture, art, music and literature, both historically and in contemporary German-speaking Europe. Emphasis in our call lies on Judaism and Islam, but presentations on other religious cultures in Germany and the German-speaking world (including emigrants and colonized peoples) are welcome. As spurs for thought the organizers offer:
Judaism as religious practice (in art, literature, film)
Antisemitism vs. "legitimate" Jewish-Christian rivalry
Literary thematization of Christian-Jewish relations
Jewish "assimilation" at the cost of Judaism (as religion)
The return of religion in contemporary secular Germany
Islamophobia in contemporary German politics, literature, thought
Condescension toward Islam under the guise of religious tolerance
2. Religious Experience and Literary Form
For the three great Religions of the Book, the status and power of textuality presents both a problem and an opportunity. Theological engagements with language highlight the limits of its possibilities of expression and its incommensurability in encounters with the divine. Yet, poetic or aesthetic form can also invite extraordinary experience. This call seeks presentations concerning the challenge of religious experience for literary form, especially in the Jewish and Christian traditions of Germany. As spurs for thought the organizers offer:
Aesthetic experience as religious experience and vice versa
Narrative conventions (e.g. hagiography, conversion)
Hebrew micrography and the problem of representation
Negative theology and apophatic speech
Anthropomorphic descriptions of God
Song as poetry, practice and religious medium
Prayer as a textual and aesthetic form
Religious drama and ritual

Religious Cultures Network Organizers

CJ Jones (University of Notre Dame)

William Donahue (University of Notre Dame)

Ralph Keen (University of Illinois-Chicago)

Contact Info: 

Claire Taylor Jones, Assistant Professor of German, University of Notre Dame

Contact Email: