Call for Papers 2020

AAR/SBL Women's Caucus
AAR/SBL Annual Conference
in Boston, November 20-24, 2020

Caucus Theme: Re-engaging Praxis: A Call for Action


There are six women's caucus sessions open for papers at this year's AAR/SBL Conference.
Submit 2020 proposals through the AAR Papers System by March 2, 2020.

Session #1: Re-engaging Praxis: A Call for Action

In light of the AAR/SBL 2020 proposed theme: “more inward-looking and self-reflective,” the AAR/ SBL Women’s Caucus, in collaboration with the Feminist Liberation Theologians’ Network (FLTN), invites papers responding to questions about centering voices of those most affected by oppression and those on the ground attempting to stem the tide. As we witness increased media coverage of various communities engaging in fascism, totalitarianism, and global environmental catastrophes, the question arises: ‘What might the feminist study of religion look like if these contexts are seriously engaged as knowledge-producing, and not merely as objects of research?’ We invite research that explores the practical resources Feminist Liberation Theologies offer to combat the growing global backlash. What needs to be reimagined or reclaimed to advance a feminist global trend of shared responsibility, to make the personal political once again, and to develop models of successful political leadership?

Session #2: Emerging Scholars Re-Engaging Praxis 

The AAR/SBL Women’s Caucus invites submissions from graduate students engaged in reimagining normative concepts and/or frameworks within the feminist study of religion and theology. We are particularly interested in proposals that introduce innovations that enhance and transform religion and religious practices. In light of the AAR/SBL 2020 proposed theme that is “more inward-looking and self-reflective,” we invite the upcoming generation of scholars to share their research and perspectives on methodologies, pedagogies and political strategies that respond to our current global and U.S. political situation. Responding to this panel is Adriaan Van Klinken, author of the acclaimed book, Kenyan Christian Queer, which demonstrates the potential for ethnography to recognize positionality and use it for advantage rather than to be disclaimed or avoided.

Session #3: Re-engaging Praxis through Publication: New Books on Gender and Religion

The AAR/SBL Women’s Caucus invites proposals from scholars who have published books on gender and religion in 2019 and 2020. Authors will provide an overview of their books and share their research in theology, biblical studies or religious studies, with a focus on its intersection with gender, sexuality, feminist or queer studies. These scholars will also share their experiences regarding strategies and mechanics for getting books on gender and religion published, make suggestions on how to overcome publication challenges in the guild and offer advice to those seeking publication of their own book manuscripts.

Session #4: A Call to Action: Raising up Marginalized Voices and Contributions of Women in the Academy

The 1000 Women in Religion Project, a major initiative of the AAR/SBL’s Women’s Caucus, is working to add 1000 biographies about women (broadly defined) to Wikipedia where only 18% of the entries are about women. A deficit of reliable secondary sources makes it difficult for wiki-editors to meet Wikipedia’s notability and reliability standards. As a practical effort to engage in praxis informed by feminist concerns about gender bias regarding access and production of knowledge, we are seeking biographies about women (1) who are or have been members of the AAR or SBL, (2) who are notable as founders, practitioners, teachers, resistors and/or researchers of the world’s religious and wisdom traditions, and (3) who do not have a biographical entry on Wikipedia. We are especially seeking biographies about women from marginalized groups whose accomplishments have made a difference in their specific fields of study, in their own communities and/or to the academy as a whole. Original research including attention to primary sources such as interviews of living subjects, transcriptions of existing recordings and historical documents is encouraged. We welcome analysis that makes a strong case for the subject’s notability in her academic area of religious influence.

Session #5: AAR/SBL Women’s Caucus Goes International

Mujerist/Womanist/Latinx/Asian feminist scholars of religion have stressed the importance of including the voices of those marginalized and under-represented in academia. They have brought attention to overlooked areas of inquiry, introduced compelling and inspiring ways of thinking and acting that have enriched the intellectual rigor and relevance of theology and religious studies. As the AAR/SBL Annual Conference attracts more international participation, we at the Women’s Caucus would like to strengthen our dialogue with those outside the US, contributing to the enrichment of the feminist discourse locally and globally. We invite scholars residing outside of the United States to submit papers focused on the feminist conceptualization of praxis with scholarship and perspectives from their international context that have been under-represented at AAR/ SBL.

Session #6: 1000+ Women in Religion Wikipedia Edit-a-thon: Improving the representation of women in the Academy on Wikipedia

The 1000+ Women in Religion Wikipedia Project—an initiative of the AAR/SBL Women’s Caucus—works to raise up the underrecognized work of women (broadly defined) in the world’s religious and wisdom traditions by adding 1000+ women onto Wikipedia. This is an initiative addressing the feminist concerns on systemic gender bias on Wikipedia where only 18% of the biographies are about women. In this workshop participants will sign up as wiki-editors and learn the basics of editing. We will do hands-on research and editing that improves existing articles about women who have been or are currently members of the AAR and SBL and work on submissions pre-selected from our list of 1000 women. If participants are passionate about a particular unrecognized woman please bring your project along. Participants do not need to be a
technological expert!! We will walk you through the Wikipedia editing process one easy step at a time. Join us!!


  • All presenters must be AAR/SBL members and pre-registered for the conference by July 2020.

  • Presentations will be 10-15 minutes in length.

  • Notice of acceptance/rejection will be sent out by April 1, 2020. 

Please contact us if you need more information or have resources that might be helpful to our members.