Conf/CfP - Family and Geneaology in the Study of Religion, 18 - 19 March 2016, University of Michigan, USA

Publish Date: Oct 26, 2015

Deadline: Nov 01, 2015

Event Dates: from Mar 18, 2016 12:00 to Mar 19, 2016 12:00

Call for Proposals:

This conference seeks to explore and bridge the surprising gap between "genealogy" and "famiily" in the study of religion.  Developments in contemporary scholarship on such topics include elaborations and critiques of genealogy, new approaches to the identification and mapping of known genealogies (including digital and graphic representations), and a growing interest in the ritual and narrative construction of lineages.  Simultaneously, increased attention has been given to the materiality of religion practiced in the home, and the role of the family as a focus for individual and communal formation.  These conversations often appear disengaged from one another and can become embedded in problematic dichotomies.  On the one hand, genealogy implies patrilineal descent, while "domestic religion" is often used synonymously with "women's religion;" on the other, genealogy is associated with science, history, and rationality, family with emotion, daily life, and nature.  Why have "family" and "geneaology" been bifurcated in religious studies? What can we learn from bringing them back together?

By approaching these topics in tandem, we hope to engender critical reflection about the sublte relations between "families" and "genealogies," and to interrogate the prevailing split that seems to separate the two.  We welcome papers on the topics listed below, as well as contributions on related issues.  Papers might approach these topics through a variety of theoretical lenses: affect theory, feminist and queer theory, spatial theory, materialist approaches, political theory, theology, critical race theory, ethics, etc.

Possible Topics:

  • Genealogy as method
  • Genealogy and relationality
  • Genealogy, family, gender
  • Family as relgious/ritual "unit"
  • Familial religious practice
  • Intimate others: association and proximity within the family unit
  • Formation and the family: the making of selves and societies
  • Death and remembrance within (and beyond) the family
  • Family relationships as metaphors for other relationships
  • Local/societal relationships as familial or genealogical
  • Familie united and divided
  • Rejection/subversion of the family or genealogy
  • Legitimation though genealogy
  • Genealogy as practice

Submission Details:

Abstracts for conference papers should be between 200 and 250 words and emailed to the conference committee at  Proposals should include the title of the paper, the presenter's name, institutional and departmental affiliation, and any technology requests.  The deadline for submission of proposals is November 1, 2015 and we will notify applicants by December 1, 2015.  

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Religious Studies

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Host Countries

United States

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Call for Papers