In the 21st century, amidst a global world defined by a shared pandemic and an increasing reliance on technology, what is meant by religion? Within western discourse, it is often declared a universal condition, but commonly claimed as a relative state. We see religion invoked as both the source for terroristic actions and the justification for apocalyptic war and retaliation; it is claimed as the site for normalizing human affairs, while producing the very conditions to other by establishing arbitrary boundaries between good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy. Religion motivates movement, legitimating projects of displacement and colonial imposition while offering the displanted a sense of belonging and a source to speak truth to power.
Lacking any clear definition, and often manifesting in contradictory, universalizing, and antagonistic ways, how might religious theory, which represents a form of radical thinking that abandons recourse to epistemological, metaphysical, or universal foundations, offer the means to reappraise modes of understanding the categories and applications of religion and the religious, as well as methods of traditional study, such as historical and modernist approaches in religious studies? In what ways are understandings (and theories) of religion and the religious marked by ruptures, disjunctions, tensions, and instabilities? By questioning and critiquing, how can theories of religion, as well as expressions of the religious, compromise, challenge, or further entrench normalized, mundane power structures that regulate organizational structures, institutions, and everyday life?
Against this backdrop, this special issue of CR: The New Centennial Review** solicits contributions that extend the journal’s commitment to “philosophically inflected interventions, provocations, and insurgencies that question the existing configuration of the Americas, as well as global and theoretical work with implications for the hemisphere.” More directly, this special issue aims to offer original interventions on the way in which religion is defined, theorized, and applied, specifically in light of contemporary global conditions, as well as postmodern and poststructuralist projects that have transformed local, national, and global ideas regarding identity, power, membership, and privilege.
Potential Topics Include (but are not limited to):
- Advent of and Transformations in Religious Theory
- Theorizing Religion
- Problems/Limits of Definition(s)
- Religion, Religious Studies, and Colonialism
- Religion, Spirituality, Theology, and Processes of Classification
- Poststructuralism and Religion
- Postmodernism and Religion
- Semiotics and Religion
- Indigeneity and Religion
- Religious Tourism
- The West and Islam
- The Future of Evangelicalism
- The “Spirituality” of Modern Art
- Contemporary Trends in Christian Theology
- Christian Reconstructionism
- Religious Dominionism
- Neoliberalism and Political Theology
- Problem(s) of God
- Inventing Religion
- Before Religion
- Deconstructive Theology
- Radical Theology
- Radical Orthodoxy
- Weak Theology
- Religion Without Religion
- Spiritual but not Religious
- Translating Religion in a Secular Age
- Secular Spirituality
**NOTE: In developing proposals and projects, please keep in mind CR: The New Centennial Review ’s commitment to “philosophically inflected interventions, provocations, and insurgencies that question the existing configuration of the Americas, as well as global and theoretical work with implications for the hemisphere.”
Please send questions and queries to Dr. Morgan Shipley at 21CenturyReligionCFP@gmail.com
If interested in contributing, please email 21CenturyReligionCFP@gmail.com by February 15, 2021 a short biography and 300-500 word abstract, clearly outlining specific subject, critical argument, and significance of contribution.
- Abstracts Due: February 15, 2021
- Invitations to Contribute: No later than March 15, 2021
- Final Articles Due: March 1, 2022
- Publication Date: Summer 2022
CR: The New Centennial Review is devoted to comparative studies of the Americas that suggest possibilities for a different future. CR is published three times a year under the editorship of Scott Michaelsen (Department of English, Michigan State University) and David E. Johnson (Department of Comparative Literature, SUNY at Buffalo; Instituto de Humanidades, Universidad Diego Portales, Santiago, Chile).
The journal recognizes that the language of the Americas is translation, and that questions of translation, dialogue, and border crossings (linguistic, cultural, national, and the like) are necessary for rethinking the foundations and limits of the Americas. Journal articles address philosophically inflected interventions, provocations, and insurgencies that question the existing configuration of the Americas, as well as global and theoretical work with implications for the hemisphere.
Dr. Morgan Shipley