VIth Open Conference of the Section on Sociology of Religion, German Sociological Association, 7th – 9th December 2017


Conference Venue: St. Bernhard in Rastatt (near Karlsruhe) / GERMANY

Sociological research on religion is empirically and thematically diverse.
Since the classical authors, religion has been identified as a mirror and
as a place of social change. With its integrative and contentious
potentials, as well as its continuities and discontinuities, religion is
also currently a central object of sociological interest; it allows an
exemplary reflection on social processes of transformation and
stabilisation. This leads to multifaceted research on religious realities,
both in European societies and in other world regions. In order to
highlight the relations between religion and society, the Section on
Sociology of Religion in the German Sociological Association (DGS)
invites scholars to its VIth Open Conference, to present diverse,
empirically and theoretically oriented contributions from a sociology of
religion perspective.

Research themes may concern institutional conditions and organisational
forms of religious practice, religious knowledge and beliefs, the
configuration of power relations in the religious field, religious gender
relations, processes of professionalisation or the diversification of
religiosity towards popular religion and spiritualisation, religious
movements, emotions and ritual forms or religious biographies, the
negotiation of religious practices and identities in migration contexts or
the representation of religiosity in the public sphere. Contributions to
varying topics and areas are very welcome. A special focus of the
conference is on methodological questions; several panels will be reserved
for the discussion of this issue. The conference offers the opportunity to
present and discuss different theoretical perspectives and empirical
approaches (quantitative and qualitative) – and to network.The conference
welcomes the presentation of current research projects and the discussion
of topics that do not fit into the thematically focused events of the
section. Junior scholars are particularly invited to submit abstracts. The
primary language of the conference is German, however English papers are
very welcome.

Deadline: Please submit abstracts of 250 words (in .doc or .pdf format)
by May, 31st 2017 to the three organisers listed below:

Marc Breuer, Katholische Hochschule NRW, Paderborn,

Uta Karstein, Universität Leipzig,

Kornelia Sammet, Universität Leipzig,

Call for Presentation Proposals: Survey Research and the Study of Religion in East Asia

East Asia, a region rich with diverse religious traditions, presents
exciting opportunities as well as unique challenges for survey researchers
interested in religion questions. On October 11-12, 2017, Pew Research
Center will host a small conference to advance the state of the art in the
study of religion using surveys in East Asia (focusing particularly on
China, South Korea, Japan and Taiwan).

The conference will be a gathering of survey researchers based in East Asia
as well as those based outside the region. Survey researcher and
Confucianism scholar Anna Sun <> will be
our keynote speaker. Plenary sessions will feature survey researchers and
religion scholars invited to discuss what it means to be religious in East
Asia and the major challenges of conducting survey research on the topic.
Breakout sessions will feature presentations submitted in response to this
call for papers.

*Breakout sessions will be composed of 10-minute presentations.* With
limited time, presenters are encouraged to get straight to the most
interesting kernel of their work. This efficient format permits more
presentations and discussion than would otherwise be possible and creates
opportunity for follow-up conversations during breaks.
Proposals that focus on the methodology of how survey work can be improved
are particularly welcome. Presentations could assess existing survey
measures of a concept and present a new alternative. They might focus on an
important religious practice or belief that tends not to be measured in
surveys, particularly if one has suggestions for how this practice/belief
could be captured with surveys. Presentations that describe interesting
findings from existing surveys are also welcome, particularly if they point
toward how future survey work might be improved.

*Space is limited for this event*, both on the program and in the meeting
facilities at our Washington, DC headquarters. Thanks to the generous
support of the Pew-Templeton Global Religious Futures project, there is no
cost to attend the event. Additionally, thanks to a grant from the Global
Religion Research Initiative <>, airfare and
lodging expenses will be covered for a limited number of scholars based in
East Asia traveling to the conference from Asia. Some participants may wish
to stay for the annual conference <> of the
Scientific Study of Religion, which will be held nearby October 13-15.

*To propose a 10 minute presentation, please email a title and abstract of
no more than 300 words along with a short statement about why you are
interested in this conference to Conrad Hackett (
<>) by June 20.*

*Key dates*
June 20 Deadline for presentation proposals
June 30 Proposal decision notification
July 1 Registration opens (if space permits, those not presenting can apply
to participate in the conference)
August 1 Registration closes
October 11 Day 1 of conference 9 am – 6:30 pm
October 12 Day 2 of conference 9 am – 5 pm

Sociology of Religion Study Group (SocRel), Annual Conference 2017: On the Edge? Centres and Margins in the Sociology of Religion. Wednesday 12th July – Friday 14th July 2017, University of Leeds.


Keynote Speakers:

Professor Bryan Turner (City University of New York)

Professor Kim Knott (University of Lancaster)

Professor Philip Mellor (University of Leeds)

(Two further keynotes, TBC)


The Sociology of Religion, as a distinct sub-discipline, has had a complex relationship with ‘mainstream’ sociology including experiencing periods of centrality and marginalisation. Beginning as a chief concern of the founding fathers of the discipline, but later relegated to almost insignificance until the so-called ‘resurgence of religion’, these changing fortunes have contributed directly to scholarship that can be dynamic, multi-faceted and responsive. In our search to understand the roles for religion in contemporary society, as scholars we frequently draw on multi-disciplinary methodologies and share a disciplinary platform with geography, politics, social policy, theology, anthropology, history and literature, to name but a few.  But where does this leave the sociology of religion as a distinct discipline?

The purpose of this conference is to investigate the boundaries and borders of sociologies of religion in an expansive and inclusive way. We want to ask, what do the centres of the sociology of religion look like in the 21st Century, and where are the margins and borders? Where are the new, and innovative subjects, methodologies and collaborations in our subject and how are they shaping the discipline?  How well do Sociologies of Religion intersect with other sociologies, such as of class, migration, ethnicity, sexuality and gender, and what are the effects? What about the geographical centres and margins of this historically Western-orientated sub-discipline, in our ever-changing world characterised by postcoloniality, globalisation and transnationalism? To what extent have any alternative Sociologies of Religion from the “edge”, to use a term proposed by Bender et al (2013), re-interpreted or re-configured the concerns of the centre? Importantly, what light does the Sociology of Religion shed on the more general study of centres and margins in religious and social settings/institutions and identities/subjectivities? Ultimately we want to question where these expansive and multi-directional boundaries leave us as ‘sociologists of religion’ and as a distinct study group and highlight the challenges and the opportunities.

We invite you to engage in these conference questions from your particular area of research.

To deliver a paper, please send an abstract of no more than 250 words, alongside a biographical note of no more than 50 words. We will also be accepting a limited number of panel proposals. To deliver a panel, please send an abstract of no more than 500 words alongside a biographical note of no more than 50 words for each contributor.

Please send abstracts to the attention of the conference organizers: Dr Caroline Starkey (University of Leeds) and Dr Jasjit Singh (University of Leeds) at


Abstracts must be submitted by 9th December 2016.


Conference Bursaries:

A limited number of bursaries are available to support postgraduate, early career, low income or unwaged SocRel members to present at the conference. Please visit for instructions, and to download an application form, and submit your bursary application along with your abstract by 9th December 2016.

All presenters must be members of SocRel.

Selected authors will be asked to contribute to an edited volume.


Key Dates:

Abstract submission: Open now

Early bird registration opens: 3rd October 2016

Abstract submission closes: 9th December 2016

Decision notification: 20th January 2017

Presenter registration closes: 10th March 2017

Early bird registration closes:  2nd June 2017

Registration closes: 23rd June 2017

Please note that after Friday, 23rd June 2017, a £50 late registration fee will apply to all bookings.


Should you have other questions about the conference please also contact the conference organisers, Dr Caroline Starkey (University of Leeds) and Dr Jasjit Singh (University of Leeds) at

For further details, visit the SocRel website: For further details about the BSA visit

Link to online CfP:

Call for papers: “The Marketing and Consumption of Spirituality and Religion”, Special Issue of Journal of Management, Spirituality & Religion. Deadline for full paper submission: January 10, 2017

Dear Colleagues,

With this special issue, the Journal of Management, Spirituality &
Religion extends an invitation to scholars in the field of marketing,
consumer research and related disciplines to contribute to the journal with
their best work on the marketing and consumption of spirituality and

While not exhaustive, the following list suggests possible issues that we
would like to address in this special issue:

  • The consumption of spirituality and religion
  • Identity, community and religious/spiritual consumption
  • The impact of religious ideologies and values on the marketing and consumption of profane goods
  • The material culture of religion and spirituality
  • Religion/religiosity, spirituality and consumer wellbeing
  • The marketization of religious/spiritual holidays, rituals and rites de passage
  • Spiritual materialism
  • Religious/spiritual consumption across the consumer lifecycle
  • The marketing strategies of religious organizations and new religious/spiritual movements (and its discontents); the organization of marketing in these domains
  • Religious history from a marketing perspective
  • The marketing management of religious/spiritual products, services
    and experiences
  • The role of spirituality and religiosity in the marketing and consumption of ‘mundane’ brands, products, and experiences
  • The marketing behavior of religiously aligned organizations
  • Entertainment brands as sources of spiritual meaning (e.g., sport brands, Star Wars, Star Trek)
  • Gender and sexuality issues in the marketing and consumption of
    religion and spirituality
  • The globalization of religious/spiritual marketing and consumption:
    orientalism, postcolonialism, creolization/syncretization, cultural
  • Tourism, immigration
  • Religion and spirituality in the digital age

This special issue welcomes empirical, methodological, and conceptual papers. In terms of methods, we are open to both qualitative and quantitative research designs, as long as data gathering and analysis procedures are rigorous. Similarly, we welcome positivist, interpretive, and critical approaches alike. We also want to encourage work based on theoretical reflection on religion and spirituality outside of marketing, consumer research, organization studies and management (e.g., psychology, sociology, anthropology, theology, cultural studies, political science, history, geography, etc.)*. Methodological and conceptual papers are also encouraged, provided that they make appropriate contributions. Finally, we will consider both theoretical work and managerially oriented

As a guide, papers should be of no more than 9,000 words (excluding references, tables, figures, etc.). More information in the call for paper (can be downloaded here: Early expressions of interests and enquiries can be directed to the guest editors.

Guest editors contact details:

Diego Rinallo, Kedge Business School and CERGAM, France (

Mathieu Alemany Oliver, Aix-Marseille Graduate School of Management – IAE
and CERGAM, France (

Sociology of Religion Group, American Academy of Religion, San Antonio, Texas, November 19-22, 2016


Statement of Purpose:

The Sociology of Religion Group of the American Academy of Religion serves
as a bridge between religious studies and the subdiscipline of sociology of
religion. It functions as a two-way conduit not only to import sociological
research into religious studies but also to export the research of
religious studies into both the subdiscipline and the broader field of
sociology. Only through a cross-fertilization transgressing departmental
boundaries can there be breakthroughs in research in both fields. The group
has a wide conception of sociology of religion. It is open to a
multiplicity of paradigms and methodologies utilized in the subfield and
sociology more broadly: theoretical as well as empirical, quantitative,
qualitative, and comparative-historical. By liaising with other Program
Units, the Sociology of Religion Group is able to bring the rich diversity
of critical and analytical perspectives that are housed in the American
Academy of Religion into mainstream sociology of religion. Conversely, it
aims to provide scholars of the study of religion with a deeper
understanding of the landscape of sociology of religion.

Theory, Method, and their Application:

Sociology of Religion as part of a larger discipline is marked by a
canonization of its theory and its division by paradigms and
methodologies–whether these be the classics (Weber and Durkheim), the old
paradigm (functionalism and social constructionism), or the new paradigm
(rational choice) on the one hand or quantitative, qualitative, or
historical-comparative sociology on the other. As it intersects with
sociology of religion, the study of religion has drawn from theories and
methodologies in conversation with sociology, anthropology, critical
theory, psychology, history, and other related disciplines. We are
interested both in papers that utilize the methods and theories in the
study of religion and bring them into the sociological canon as well as
those that help religious studies gain a better grasp of the sociological
theory of religion. We encourage papers that exploit both the theory and
methodology of sociology of religion and religious studies and use them as
frames for analysis of concrete cases. In particular, we request papers
that touch upon social divisions examining race, class, gender, sexual
orientation, ethnicity, region, age, etc.


Internationalism and Diversity:

Critics of sociology of religion have pointed out that the field is
dominated by North Americans scholars primarily interested in
Protestantism. The discipline of religious studies provides a clear
antidote to these perceived limitations. Therefore, we encourage
contributions from academics who study the various religious traditions
around the world as well as those studying North American religious
communities. In particular, we would like submissions from scholars from
all academic ranks across the lines of nationality, region, race,
ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, etc.


Call for Papers:

The Sociology of Religion Group (SOR) invites both panel and paper
proposals across a wide range of topics of interest to both the sociology
of religion and religious studies and are particularly interested in
papers, which speak to both thereby encouraging increased dialogue between
them. In particular, this year’s CFP expresses interest in the following

• Following the theme of AAR’s 2016 annual meetings, the Sociology of
Religion Group invites papers that address the multi-dimensions of
“Revolutionary Love.” This includes but is not limited to love communism
(or the communism of love), brotherly/sisterly love, or love as an impulse
for social change. Conversely, it could include the inverse hypothesis –
where love is not revolutionary at all but is egoistic or narcissistic
(self-love), where revolutions are not based on love but on hate, where
love is harmful and tears down dreams rather than build them up. Finally,
papers could contain a synthesis addressing the contradictory impulses of
revolutionary love – e.g. paradoxical reflections of the religious adage to
love thy enemy.

• Social and Religious Movements and/or Social Movements Theory and
Religious Movements Theory

• Competing Canons within the Sociology of Religion and Religious Studies

• Theory and Methodology including issues of reproducibility, validity, and

• Religion and the Public Sphere

• Religion and Education including but not limited to “Religion and
Education in Pluralistic Societies” or “Religion and Education in the
Postsecular Age.”

• In a co-sponsored paper session, the Quaker Studies Group and Sociology
of Religion Group invite proposals on normative religious identity and
notions of the ‘true Church.’ We are interested in papers that utilize
sociological theories and methods in the analysis of this topic. We are
particularly interested in the following questions: What mechanisms do
religious groups use to establish normative identities, particularly
against deviants or schismatics within their own group? How is ‘membership’
and ‘authenticity’ counted and measured? What types of authority are used
to sustain particular identities and how are these operationalized within
the group? How are notions of ‘the world’ constructed and sustained, and
how are these notions adapted when they no longer serve their original
purpose (for example during the processes of denominationalization or
internal secularization)?

• The topics mentioned above are meant merely as suggestions. We encourage
submissions of all papers that utilize sociological theories, methods, and
questions in their analysis of religion. We are particularly interested in
papers that address issues of inequalities of race, class, ethnicity,
gender, sexual orientation, or those that utilize critical paradigms
including but not limited to critical theory, Marxism, feminism, queer
theory, post-colonialism, post-structuralism, and environmentalism.


The Sociology of Religion Group of AAR regularly co-sponsors panels with
the peer-reviewed print and online journal Critical Research on Religion
(CRR) ( Published by SAGE Publications, over 2600
libraries worldwide have subscriptions to the journal. Presenters of
promising papers in SOR panels will be invited to turn their papers into
articles and submit them for peer review to CRR.


Deadline for Submissions: Tuesday, March 1, 2016



Rebekka King (Middle Tennessee State University)
Warren S. Goldstein (Harvard University)

Steering Committee:
Afe Adogame (Princeton University)
Courtney Bender (Columbia University)
David Feltmate (Auburn University)
Volkhard Krech (Ruhr-Universität Bochum)
Katja Rakow (Universiteit Utrecht)
Randy Reed (Appalachian State University)

CALL FOR PAPERS International conference RELIGIONS AND HUMAN RIGHTS Padua (Italy), April 14-15, 2016

The relationship between religion and human rights is controversial and debated. The aim of the international conference is to take stock of the complex connections between religion and human rights, emphasizing that both the definition and the application of these two concepts are influenced by the different social and cultural contexts within which they are placed. Starting from the geopolitical changes which have involved contemporary society on a global scale, the conference intends to critically evaluate the two main narratives on this topic: on the one hand religions understood as an element opposing the affirmation of human rights, and on the other religions considered as agencies facilitating the implementation of human rights. Religious rights, understood as individual and/or collective rights, are disputed as well. How do religious traditions and new religious communities approach human rights issues? How do states manage religious traditions and religious diversification? How are human rights discourses and practices affected by the social context?

Participants are invited to explore from different disciplinary perspectives the following topics: Freedom of expression, speech, choice, association; non-discrimination; gender issues; religionstate relations; violence; conflict; peace.

Confirmed keynote speakers:

Eileen Barker, London School of Economics

Lori Beaman, University of Ottawa

Willy Fautré, Human Rights Without Frontiers International Silvio Ferrari, University of Milan

Enzo Pace, University of Padua James Richardson, University of Nevada

Hans-Georg Ziebertz, University of Wuerzburg

The international conference is organized by the Joint PhD Programme on “Human Rights, Society, and Multi-level Governance” (Universities of Athens-Panteion, Padua, Western Sydney, Zagreb). Scientific Committee: Giuseppe Giordan, University of Padua Adam Possamai, Western Sidney University Constantin Preda, University of Bucharest Siniša Zrinščak, University of Zagreb.

Abstracts (300 words) should be sent to Giuseppe Giordan ( no later than January 15th, 2016. Acceptance notification will be sent by January 25th, 2016. There are no fees for attendance.

“The Diversity of Nonreligion” & NSRN Conference 2016, 7-9 July 2016

CFP: Approaching Nonreligion: Conceptual, methodical, and empirical approaches in a new research field

For some years now, nonreligious phenomena have not only sparked public, but also scholarly attention. A rising number of scholars have begun to engage with both organized and non-organized forms of nonreligion. We want to use this conference to go beyond the discussion of terms and individual findings to facilitate exchange over different approaches, and engage with the following broader questions:

– What phenomena are approached in research projects on nonreligion and how is nonreligion construed in different studies?

– What are central theoretical references for studies on nonreligion, and in what way do scholars engage with related broader debates on religion and secularity?

– What are methodic and methodological challenges and approaches in concrete empirical research?

– What scientific traditions and sources of inspiration motivate and guide researchers in the field of nonreligion?

– In what ways is research on nonreligion entangled with religious-nonreligious contestations?

The conference brings together empirical research with conceptual and methodological reflection, as well as a self-reflexive perspective on the research field itself.

There will be room for both individual papers as well as prepared panels. We welcome scholarly contributions from different scientific fields. Please apply with either an abstract for an individual paper or a proposal for a thematic session (2-4 individual papers). Please name your institutional affiliation if possible. Please send your proposal (200-300 words) to:

Deadline for proposals: January 15th 2016, Notification of acceptance: January 30th 2016

Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies (ISEK), University of Zürich, Switzerland (

The Diversity of Nonreligion: Religious-Nonreligious Dynamics in the Contemporary World (

Nonreligion and Secularity Research Network (

IPSA 23-26 July 2016 Istanbul Call for Papers Panel: Politics of International Migration

We now know that large-scale mobility of people across international
borders is not only a one-time movement from country A to country B. It is
a phenomenon that creates different levels of transnational spaces, where
not only the people, but also the sending and receiving societies and
governments are largely involved and affected. Thus, the panel is looking
for those papers that are integrating different perspectives of the wide
variety of fields that are interested in the study of migration, such as
political science, sociology, economics, and anthropology. We welcome
studies on human migration with different indications, and mainly research
that focus on comparative findings with significance beyond a single case
study; novel methodological techniques; and innovative theoretical
contributions on the various dimensions and effects of international
migration. We argue that migration molds not only societies, but also has
important policy consequences, all of which largely fit the special focus
of the 2016 conference Politics in a World of Inequality. Accordingly, we
are interested in papers exploring –but not limited to- the following main

• Policy responses to international migration on different levels, i.e.,
international, national, local
• Debates on diversity and citizenship
• Migration and mobility nexus

Language: English
Chairs: Dr. Deniz Sert & Derya Ozkul
Discussant: Dr. Dogus Simsek

Deadline for paper submission: 7 OCT 2015
You will find all the details about the congress and guidelines for
submissions on the conference website: