CFP: Co-IRIS Workshop and Panel

We would like to invite you to participate in our Co-IRIS workshop at EISA’s EWIS and Co-IRIS panel at IPSA.
The call for papers for the Co-IRIS workshop entitled “Worlding beyond the Clash of Civilizations: An Agenda for an International Relations-Islam Discourse” is available at
The call for papers for the Co-IRIS panel entitled “Khaldunian Civilizational Analysis in International Relations” is available at

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Workshop: Religious diversity in Asia

Workshop: 7.-8. December 2015. Organised by the Centre for Contemporary Religion, Aarhus University, funded by the Danish Research Council.


Applications are invited for a limited number of people to participate in the two days’ workshop in Aarhus, Denmark. Expenses for travel, food, and accommodation will be covered.

The study of religious diversity has in recent years been rising on the agenda. Focus has almost exclusively been on North America, Europe and Australia and issues concerned with maintaining cohesion in these societies. It is however obvious that religious diversity is not a phenomenon confined to the west. Especially in Asia religious diversity at both individual and institutional level has a long history with many examples of both syncretic traditions and religious divisions of labour. Yet the concepts associated with research on religious diversity are clearly drafted in a Western context. This means that they are constructed upon concepts of membership and adherence, with a strong Christian and Western bias not necessarily fitting Eastern models of multiple and contextual affiliations.

Previously, the Critical Analyses of Religious Diversity (CARD) have met for two workshops in Denmark ( This network explores ways in which research could proceed in order to craft concepts and models of understanding religious diversity which will allow fitting representations of religious diversity in Asia, and in a broader sense create new perspectives for understanding religious diversity globally.

A workshop on the topic was held in Delhi in May 2015, and the network will have two more workshops in Kyoto and Nagoya in October before this final one in Aarhus in December, where a limited number of Asian scholars are invited to continue the scholarly discussions and make strategic plans for future cooperation and publication of an anthology on religious diversity.

The network is be led by Jørn Borup, Lene Kühle, and Marianne Qvortrup Fibiger, Aarhus University.

Invitees are expected to pesent a paper and be prepared to engage in a critical discussion of their work. In addition, we want our participants to think critically about the assumptions that have been made about religious diversity in their research methods/context.

Some of the topics that we hope to have included in the workshop are:

–       Terminology; do you (your colleagues) use “religious diversity”, “religious pluralism” and/or other concepts?

–       Methods; Are you using quantitative data, qualitative data, census data, or micro, macro?

–       Empirical data; Is your research focused on specific geographical areas, or do you engage in comparative work? Are there specific points about religious diversity in Asia compared to the West?

–       Specific topics; do you investigate religious diversity in relation to demography, ethnicity, nationality, gender, human rights, diaspora, media, law, politics?

If interested in joining the workshop, please send a 250 word abstract by Oct 1st  2015 to Jørn Borup,

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CFP: Muslim and Sports

In the recent years, there have been an increasing number of studies on
the physical activity of muslim youth and especially on Muslim
schoolgirls in Europe. The researches on physical activity have expanded
in new domains such as sports activities during the month of Ramadan,
wearing headscarf in olympic games and footbal matches, halal meals in
football training camps, mixed-sex swimming lessons and dancing clubs.
Sports are also at the centre of the debates on Islamic expressions of
identity and diversity. These researches on life experiences of Muslims
in different contexts reveal how sports constitute a terrain for
identity making, empowerment, and religious plurality particulary with
regards to Islam.

The visibilty of Muslim and the presence of Islam in sports need
specific attention. On the one hand, there is an increase in social
mobility, socialisation and participation in the society via sport; on
the other hand, research has indicated that this participation in sports
reveals some particularities in Islamic codes of living. These
particularities and religious expressions in sports are seen as a means
of defying secular values and life.

This workshop attempts to provide more insight on the relationship
between Muslims who live in Europe and sports-physical activity. We
would like to examine how Muslims make sense of religion and their
religious identity in sportive activities and how public policies are
organized vis-a-vis the needs of the Muslim populations in Europe.
During this workshop we want to adress a range of issues such as space,
gender, social inclusion, multiculturalism, citizenship, politics of
identity and secularism.

Tuition Fees

There will be no tuition fees.


An edited book will be produced and published by the GCIS with Leuven
University Press, comprising some or all of the papers presented at the
Workshop, at the condition that they pass a peer review organized by the
publisher. The papers will be arranged and introduced, and to the extent
appropriate, edited, by scholar(s) to be appointed by the Editorial Board.

Copyright of the papers accepted to the Workshop will be vested in the GCIS.

Selection Criteria

The workshop will accept up to 10 participants, each of whom must meet
the following requirements:

  • have a professional and/or research background in related topics
    of the workshop;
  • be able to attend the entire programme.

Since the Workshop expects to address a broad range of topics while the
number of participants has to be limited, writers submitting abstracts
are requested to bear in mind the need to ensure that their language is
technical only where it is absolutely necessary and the language should
be intelligible to non-specialists and specialists in disciplines other
than their own; and present clear, coherent arguments in a rational way
and in accordance with the usual standards and format for publishable work.


Abstracts (300–500 words maximum) and CVs (maximum 1 page) to be
received by 20th September 2015.
Abstracts to be short-listed by the Editorial Board and papers
invited by 30th September 2015.
Conference: 7 December 2015

Workshop Editorial Board and Organizers

Joyce Koeman, KU Leuven

Pascal Delheye, KU Leuven

Erkan Toğuşlu, KU Leuven


KU Leuven University, Belgium.

The international workshop is organized by KU Leuven Gülen Chair for
Intercultural Studies and Faculty of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation
Sciences (FaBeR). The language of the workshop is English and will be
hosted by KU Leuven Gülen Chair in Leuven.

Papers and abstract should be sent to :

For more information plz contact:

Erkan Toguslu

KU Leuven Gülen Chair for Intercultural Studies

Parkstraat 45 – box 3615
3000 Leuven

Dr. Erkan Toguslu
Gülen Chair for Intercultural Studies
IMMRC – Anthropology
KU Leuven

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CFP: Liberal Rights for Illiberal Purposes? Workshop 15-17 Oct 2015

Call for Papers for the Workshop

Liberal Rights for Illiberal Purposes? Comparing Discursive Strategies of Conservative Religious and Right-wing Actors in the Public Spheres

October 15-17 2015

European University Viadrina Frankfurt/Oder (Germany) and Słubice (Poland)

A battle between institutions expanding liberal rights  and  conservative or right-wing forces has flared in most western societies since the mid-nineties. Whereas the promotion of gender mainstreaming, the recognition of cultural and sexual diversity or of „reproductive rights“ is naturally seen as part of a liberal agenda and as reliable tool for combating discrimination, also conservative coalitions base their claims on liberal argumentation. This is a novum in this debate.

Instead of opposing gay-marriage on religious grounds, coalitions against the political implementation of gay rights increasingly formulate their demands on the basis of respect for freedom of expression or religious liberty. In a similar vein, political groups and parties opposing Muslim immigrants,  also claim to  defend the „western heritage“ of liberalism.

In the light of these observations, we invite scholars from different disciplines such as social science, philosophy or communication studies to an international workshop. The aims of the workshop are:

a)   a) To map and compare the public rhetoric or discursive strategies of conservative religious and right-wing actors on liberal norms:

b)    b) To investigate the implications the mentioned empirical insights have for liberal thinking – taking into account that liberal theory considers the translation of religious reasons into a secular language before entering the public sphere a desirable condition for „post-secular“ societies (Habermas);

c)   c) To analyze the effects such clashing interpretations of or reference to fundamental liberal democratic values (equality and liberal freedom) have for politics, society and research as well.

d)    d) To think about publishing and further research on that issue.

Against this background, paper-givers should address one or more of the following questions:


In which ways, under which conditions and for which ends do conservative religious and/or right-wing groups apply a secular language of liberal rights in the public spheres?

Conceptual and Methodological:

How to conceptualize and methodologically approach the public reference to “liberal rights for illiberal purposes”?


Which normative implications does the apparently strategic use of liberal rights language have for liberal theory on the one hand and the use of political/liberal concepts on the other?


What are effects or implications of such „liberal“ rhetoric for politics, society and academic research alike? To what extent does it trigger the formation of new patterns of conflict or cleavages? In the case of religious groups: What are the effects for boundaries between religion and politics?

The workshop is organized by the Chair of Comparative Politics at the Faculty of Social and Cultural Science at European University Viadrina. It will take place from October 15-17, 2015 at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder and Słubice on the other side of the river Oder. The European University Viadrina is situated approximately 1h (by local train) from Berlin.

Please send your abstract (300 words), and a short bio note, to Anja Hennig ( by August 4 2015. Applicants will be informed about the acceptance of their submission no later than September 1 2015.

Travel costs and accommodation of a few selected participants can be covered.

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Oxford Symposium on Religious Studies,

Invitation to the Oxford Symposium on Religious Studies, 2015, at the Old Library in the Oxford University Church of St Mary

We are pleased to invite you to participate in the Oxford Symposium on Religious Studies. You may register for the Summer Session (3, 4 & 5 August) or the Fall Session (7, 8 & 9 December). The meeting will be held at The Old Library in the Oxford University Church of St Mary.  Constructed in 1320, The Old Library is the first university (as opposed to college) building in Oxford and therefore uniquely important; this is where the nascent University began.

The sessions will be hosted by Canon Brian Mountford, Vicar of St Mary’s. Dr. Mountford is a Fellow and Chaplain of St Hilda’s College in the University of Oxford.

You are invited to present a paper on an aspect of religious studies, or you may wish to attend as an observer.

For more information visit our website Oxford Symposium on Religious Studies

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Workshop/CFP: “Religious and social dynamics amongst mercantile communities of the western Indian Ocean”

Call for Papers

Conveners: Iqbal Akhtar and Steven Vose, School of International and Public Affairs at FIU
Venue: Florida International University, Miami, Florida (USA)
Date: 12-13 November 2015

Co-sponsors: Florida International University, Le Centre d’Études de l’Inde et de l’Asie du Sud (CNRS), and the American Institute for Pakistan Studies.

Title:  Rāhē najāt (The path of salvation): Religious and social dynamics amongst mercantile communities of the western Indian Ocean

Agenda: A two-day conference with a public keynote bringing together interdisciplinary scholars in the humanities, generally defined, in order to present and discuss the medieval and modern histories of merchant communities of the western Indian Ocean. The output of the conference will be an edited volume or a special issue of a journal and key lectures made publically available via the FIU web portal.

Theme: This gathering will explore religious and social transformations that occurred as a result of migration and cosmopolitanism, such as transformative cosmologies and transnational endowments. This conference attempts to transcend the transatlantic divide among scholars of medieval and modern trading communities of the west coast of the Subcontinent. For example, early modern Sindh and Baluchistan were home to a diverse array of religious communities from Ibāḍī Omanis to vāṇiyō Jain and Hindu merchants as well as numerous mercantile caste communities, such as the Khōjā and Bhāṭiyā. These South Asian communities were intimately linked to their settlements throughout the western Indian Ocean, particularly East Africa. This conference will explore how processes of migration transformed social dynamics and community identities.

Some of the questions posed by this conference include: What were the changing dynamics of port-hinterland relationships of caste communities? How were the religious identities of these merchant communities formed and influenced by communal interactions with each other in the precolonial period? How did the oceanic caste communities develop distinct forms of praxis? What of the kāḷā pāṇī (‘black water’) taboo, was it operative? If so, for whom? How has the modern loss of ancestral scripts and dialects transformed their communal identities today?  How and to what extent were literatures transported?

Deadline: Abstracts of 250 words including the name, affiliation, and contact information of proposed presenters are due by 15 June 2015 to be emailed to Iqbal Akhtar (

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CFP: Workshop on Women Negotiating Secularism

Invitation and call for papers

Women negotiating secularism and multiculturalism through civil society organisations

Centre for Trust, Peace & Social Relations, Coventry University, UK, June 30 – July 1st 2015

This workshop is the second of a series of international workshops on the theme “Is secularism bad for women? Women, Religion and Multiculturalism in contemporary Europe” focusing on the relation between the role of religion in women’s lives and gender equality ( ). This is an important question to debate, given the increased visibility of religion in the globalized world of the 21st century. While some scholars and political actors argue that a form of political secularism is the best way to ensure gender equality, others consider secularism a bad political arrangement for religious people, because it excludes them from the political and public sphere. Taking forward discussions initiated by Susan Moller Okin’s controversial 1997 essay ‘Is multiculturalism bad for women?’ and continued recently in works of
scholars including Saba Mahmood, Joan Scott, Nilüfer Göle, Nadje Al-Ali, Linell Cady and Tracy Fessenden, these workshops address the following questions:

  • How can European societies secure religious women’s freedom and flourishing?
  • What political arrangements offer the most to those who are religious and female? Is religion – at least some forms of it – an impossible impediment, something that must be destroyed in order for women to be free?
  • Or can religion be a positive force in women’s lives, something that enhances their wellbeing and aids social justice?

This workshop will approach these issues by focusing on the organisational or group level; the first workshop at Uppsala University (May 2015) examines the individual or everyday level, and the third at University of Coimbra, Lisbon (November 2015), will address the public and political context. In the Coventry workshop we will investigate what women’s and religious organisations are doing to address issues of secularism and multiculturalism. How do these differ by geography or faith group? To what extent do faith-based organisations working for religious inclusion in civil society press for gender equality too? How do women’s organisations approach religion, and do they consider religion to be an equality issue alongside ethnicity, gender, sexuality or disability? How are women’s faith-based organisations’ working across secular/religious spheres and with other civil society organisations?
How do theological/hermeneutical approaches inform religious organisations’ work on gender and women’s issues?

Keynote speakers:  Dr Line Nyhagen (Loughborough University) and Dr Niamh Reilly (National University of Ireland, Galway)

We invite papers that discuss these questions. Abstracts should be sent by 10th April, written in English and not exceed 300 words. Notification of acceptance will be given by April 30th. Please send abstracts to:

Practical information:

The workshop will run from 4 pm on 30th June to 5 pm on 1st July. Papers will be presented in thematic, parallel sessions. Participation fee is £15 per participant or £10 for PhD, post-doc or civil society organizations, which includes refreshments. The workshop is funded by the International Society for the Sociology of Religion and organized by Dr Kristin Aune (Coventry University), Prof Mia Lӧvheim (Uppsala University), Dr Terhi Utriainen (University of Helsinki), Dr Alberta Giorgi (Centre of Social Studies, University of Coimbra; GRASSROOTSMOBILISE, Eliamep) & Dr Teresa Toldy (Fernando Pessoa
University, Porto; Centre of Social Studies, University of Coimbra). A book publication featuring some of the papers is planned.

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Seminar on Religious Transnationalism, April 16-17, 2015

Dear colleagues,

We would like to invite you to join our 2-day seminar on religious transnationalism on Thursday 16 and Friday 17 April 2015 at VU University Amsterdam.  

Venue: VU University (Metropolitan building, room Z009 and Z007)

Time: 9.30 a.m. till 5.00 p.m. (the programme is attached)


Prof. Dr. Thijl Sunier, department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, VU University

Prof. Dr. Nina Glick Schiller, University of Manchester

General theme

The seminar deals with the contemporary dynamics of transnational religious fields across the world by addressing the shifting configurations between new modes of transnational religious practices on the one hand and evolving forms of nation-building and national domestication of religious communities in a time of growing nationalism en exclusion. Transnational activity of religious communities and social actors is certainly not new, nor is the paradox between people living religious lives, locally and transnationally and states domesticating religions (Glick Schiller et al. 1994). However, emerging new forms of regulatory regimes both at a national and a local level have engendered new forms of transnational activity. The ever changing character of the ‘cosmologistical problem’ (Vasquez et al. 2003) informs and shapes new modes of transnational religious activity.

Keynote address: Prof. Dr. Manuel Vasquez (University of Florida, USA), Thursday morning, 16 April, entitled “Seeng Transnationally:  Religion and the Emergence of New Regimes of Visibility and Discipline.”

Four panels

Transnational religious activism


Secular intolerance

Cosmopolitanism and religion

Entrance: free, and open to everyone! Registration:

Please find the programme attached. We would appreciate it if you could distribute this invitation among your network and/or students.

We hope to welcome you on 16 and 17 April!

Best regards, on behalf of the conveners,

Heleen van der Linden

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CFP: Summer Workshop on Faith-Based Violence

We would like to draw your attention to the call for applications for the 2015 UCSIA summer school on “Religion, Culture and Society: Entanglement and Confrontation”. This summer school is a one-week course taking place from Sunday 23rd of August until Sunday 30th of August 2015 (dates of arrival and departure). This year the programme will focus on the topic of Is Faith-based Violence Religious?


Despite the predicted secularization process that would make religion less salient in the global world, the topic of faith biased violence remains hugely relevant, both from a societal and an academic perspective. Whether the movements are pro-democracy or pro-theocracy, religious movements are often instrumental in political change. Political tensions mapped onto religious discourse may also de-contextualize historical events, mythologize agendas and transform neighbours into ‘others’ while the struggle for ‘Truth’ renders defence into an act of aggression. Given UCSIA’s mission to delve into academically timely and challenging topics we will approach this phenomenon from an interdisciplinary perspective. More specifically, the UCSIA summer school  will investigate both sides of the subject matter: Is religion inductive of or instrumental for violence?

Guest lecturers are Jonathan Fox (Religion and State Project, Faculty of the Political Studies, Bar-Ilan University); Peter Neumann (Department of War Studies, King’s College London, and  International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation); Marat Shterin (Department of Theology and Religious Studies, King’s College London); & Thijl Sunier (Cultural Anthropology, Faculty of Social Sciences, VU University Amsterdam).

Practical details:

Participation and stay for young scholars and researchers are free of charge. Participants should pay for their own travel expenses to Antwerp.

You can submit your application via the electronic submission on the summer school website. The completed file as well as all other required application documents must be submitted to the UCSIA Selection Committee not later than Sunday 19 April 2015.

For further information regarding the programme and application procedure, please have a look at our website:

Please help us to distribute this call for application among PhD students and postdoctoral scholars who might be interested in applying for this summer school.

For all further information, do not hesitate to contact us on the address below.

Best regards,

Sara Mels

Project coordinator

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Science and Religion: Exploring the Spectrum Workshop

Science and Religion: Exploring the Spectrum Workshop

York University Toronto, 26th-28th May 2015

Early Career Researcher Bursaries:

We have a number of bursaries available for Canada based PhD students and Early Career Researchers to attend and participate in the Science and Religion: Exploring the Spectrum workshop. These bursaries will cover the cost of your registration, accommodation, all workshop meals and a significant contribution to some or all of your travel costs up to a value of $650 CAD.

‘Early-Career Researcher’ is defined as up to five years post-PhD (or equivalent taking into account career breaks for childcare etc.)

We welcome applications from researchers who are just starting to develop an interest in this field as well as those who existing research directly relates to the project content.

To apply for a Travel Bursary for the workshop at York University, Toronto please send a short 2 -3 page copy of your CV together with a statement of up to 300 words on why you are interested in attending the workshop and how your research intersects with its themes (see below for details) to:

The closing date for applications is: 16th April 2015

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