The Department of Philosophy and Religion and the Program in African and African-American Studies in the College of Social Sciences and Humanities at Northeastern University seek to fill a tenure track position of Assistant Professor in the area of Religion, Race and Politics, beginning Fall 2019. The person filling this position will have their tenure home in the Philosophy and Religion Department with a joint appointment in the African and African American Studies Program. The successful candidate will have a strong scholarly record and a commitment to and experience in undergraduate teaching. Candidates will be expected to teach courses in their area of expertise, as well as introductory courses in religious studies and African American Studies. Candidates should have a commitment to fostering diverse and inclusive environments as well as an interest in promoting experiential learning, which are central to a Northeastern University education.
Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Applications received by November 10th will be assured full consideration.
For details and to apply, visit https://neu.peopleadmin.com/postings/57624
Call for Proposals
Edited volume: Jewishness and Sexuality in the 20th Century United States
Editors: Gillian Frank, Rachel Kranson & Jonathan Krasner
What differences have Jews and Judaism made in the history of American sexuality? How has the history of sexuality shaped the history of American Jews and Judaism?
Historians have investigated the centrality of sexuality to the political, social, and cultural history of the United States. Yet until recently, few historians of sexuality have attended to the important ways that Jewish religious practices, Jewish identities, Jewish culture, Jewish institutions, and Jewish political perspectives have shaped sexual politics, sexual communities and sexual identities over the course of the twentieth century. Likewise, historians of American Jews and Judaism have barely begun to account for the changing meanings of sexuality within American Jewish politics, institutions, practices, and identities.
There are multiple sites in the history of sexuality in the 20th century United States which an analysis of Jewishness will yield productive insights and transform dominant narratives. Likewise, there is so much we cannot understand about American Jewish life in the 20th century United States until we pay more attention to its sexual dimensions. To that end, this edited volume is accepting proposals for historical scholarship that places the categories of Jews, Judaism, and sexuality at the center of analysis in order to map the interrelation of changing Jewish and sexual landscapes. We welcome chapters that take Jewishness as a starting point for rethinking American sexual history and sexuality as a starting point for rethinking American Jewish history. Submissions that respond to the following questions are particularly encouraged:
- How does focusing on the history of American Jews and Judaism enrich our understanding of the histories of sexualized racial formations; GLBTQ identities, communities and politics; sexual health or disease, eugenics, and social hygiene; commercialized sexuality (e.g., sex work, pornography, performance, popular culture); sexuality and technology; contraception and abortion; courtship, marriage, and divorce; reproduction and adoption; sex advice, sex education and sexual therapy; sexual subcultures; the law and sexuality (e.g., immigration, workplace discrimination, criminal sexuality); abstinence or chastity; gender role construction; and heterosexuality?
- How does nuanced attention to sexuality reshape conventional narratives of twentieth century American Jewish history; the meanings and influence of secularity, secularization, and the secular; conceptions of Jewish community, Jewish continuity, and/or Jewish politics; the role of Jewish family; Jewish religious formations of racial, ethnic, sexual, gender identity/ies; and religious practices, and narratives of “tradition” and “modernity” alongside historical continuity and change?
- What discursive and material contexts and practices constructed the relationship between American Jews and sexuality?
- In what social institutions did Jewish and sexual experiences and ideas intersect?
- How were Jewish spaces and places deployed variously as sites of sexual and gender socialization, experimentation, discovery, exploitation and/or repression.
- In what ways have assumptions about sexuality affected the practices and decisions of American Jewish communal institutions, and the distribution of resources and power within those institutions?
- How have sexual and Jewish identities been constructed in relation or opposition to each other?
- In what ways have sexual subcultures and communities engaged with American Jews and Judaism?
- How have Jewish religious authorities, ideas and institutions responded to or shaped sexual values, meanings, practices and identities?
- How have American Jewish religious authorities’ ideas about (and policing of) sexual norms and deviancies change over time? How have American Jewish religious authorities, groups or institutions informed or enforced social rules about sexual behavior? How have they shaped and reshape dominant sexual meanings?
- How have religious groups created alternative sexual subcultures?
Please send a proposal of no more than 1500 words to Gillian Frank (gaf4xf (at) virginia.edu), Jonathan Krasner (jkrasner (at) brandeis.edu) and Rachel Kranson (kranson (at) pitt.edu) by January 15, 2019 along with a 1-page CV. Please explicitly reference your major sources of research / archival sources in your proposal. Authors will be notified of decisions by March of 2019. The due date for completed drafts (of between 5000 and 7500 words) is August 15, 2019.
From Prof. Rebecca Barrett-Fox, Religious Studies Project Features co-editor:
The Religious Studies Project<https://www.religiousstudiesproject.com/>, a digital endeavor to promote religious studies, seeks respondents to write commentaries on our podcasts.
Respondents get to preview RSP interviews of high-profile religious studies scholars, then offer about 1000 words of commentary that can include critique, reflection, or connection between the podcast and other sources. They may but don’t have to include references to academic texts, but they will also include lots of hyperlinks and citations to any academic references. Images are welcome, as are suggestions for intriguing titles. Finally, we would need a short bio statement and photo of you to add to the podcast.
About once per month, a features editor sends out an email to everyone in our pool of respondents listing all the podcasts we’ve recently recorded that are in need of respondents. If a podcast interests you, you’ll email me or co-editor Marek Sullivan to let us know you’d like it assigned to you. After listening to the audio/reading the transcript, you will craft a response of about 1000 words. While we are happy to work with your schedule, turnaround time is typically two weeks.
I have listed podcasts-in-process that are in need of a respondent below; if you see something of interest, please email me at rbarrettfox (at) astate.edu. If you don’t see something of interest now but would like to be included in future calls for respondents, please let me know. Additionally, if you know of someone you think would be a thoughtful respondent, please share this with them or forward their name to me so I can add them to our list of potential respondents.
Looking forward to bringing you some great podcasts soon!
Rebecca Barrett-Fox, RSP Features co-editor
Assistant Professor of Sociology
Arkansas State University
rbarrettfox (at) astate.edu
1. Slenderman and online mythology, with Vivian Asimos by Ross Downing
Ross Downing discusses personal and communal narratives, online mythology and the grey areas between religion and media with Vivian Asimos, whose work has investigated the potentiality of video games as contemporary mythology in popular culture. In the broader context of BASR 2018, the overall theme of boundaries and categories is explored, as is the possible insights online movements can yield in the perception and application of theories of religion.
2. A Global Study on Government Restrictions and Social Hostilities Related to Religion with Katayoun Kishi by Benjamin P Marcus
In this podcast, we speak with Dr. Katayoun Kishi, who oversaw the ninth in a series of reports by Pew Research Center analyzing the extent to which governments and societies around the world impinge on religious beliefs and practices. The share of countries with “high” or “very high” levels of government restrictions on religious beliefs and practices rose, but the share of countries with “high” or “very high” levels of social hostilities involving religion remained stable. In total in 2016, 83 countries (42%) had high or very high levels of overall restrictions on religion – whether resulting from government actions or from hostile acts by private individuals, organizations and social groups–up from 80 (40%) in 2015 and 58 (29%) in 2007. We discuss the findings of the report as well as methodology for collecting and analyzing data. Dr. Kishi summarizes findings for different regions of the world–including the Americas, Europe, and the Middle East and North Africa–and explains long-term trends evident from Pew’s reports.
3. Preserving identity and empowering women. How do Canadian Muslim schools affect their students? with Jasmine Zine by Mariia Alekseevskaia
In this interview, Dr. Jasmin Zine talks about Muslim schools in Canada and their impact on their students’ identity development and integration in the society. Having served for decades as a tool to preserve a particular religious identity, Islamic schooling also plays a crucial role in empowering female students. In some cases, Muslim schools have become a safe haven, especially for women, “a place where their identity is not in question, where they can feel safe and comfortable.” Also, Dr. Zine describes to Mariia Alekseevkaia the challenges that Canadian Muslim schools face today, including a difficulty to promote critical thinking and “the spirit of debate” while teaching about religion as well as maintaining patriarchal religious cultures. Lastly, Prof. Zine discusses academic colonialism and shares her personal story of what it means to be Muslim woman in academia.
4. Negotiating Gender in Contemporary Occultism with Manon Hedenborg White by Sammy Bishop
In this interview conducted at the 2018 EASR conference in Bern, Sammy Bishop speaks to Manon Hedenborg White about the development of Western esotericism, charting the influence of the infamous Aleister Crowley and his philosophy of Thelema. They explore Crowley’s somewhat ambiguous view of gender, before brining the research into the present day, on how gender roles in contemporary Thelema can be contested and negotiated. Finally, Hedenborg White delves into the important but often overlooked role of women in the development of contemporary Occultism.
5. The Hugging Guru: Amma and Transnationalism with Marianne Qvortrup Fibiger by Sammy Bishop
In this interview conducted at the 2018 EASR conference in Bern, Marianne Ovortrup Fibiger speaks to Sammy Bishop about Amma, a guru who has become world famous for her healing hugs—apparently giving more than 33 millions hugs over the past 30 years. They discuss the ways in which different audiences can interrupt Amma’s message and how she reconnects Hindus in diaspora with their traditions. Focusing particularly on the guru’s global reach, Fibiger discusses her fieldwork in Amma’s Kerala ashram and how Western devotees in India or influencing developments here.
6. The Therwil Affair: Handshakes in Swiss Schools with Philipp Hetmancyzk and Martin Bürgin, by Thomas White
In this podcast, recorded at the Annual EASR Conference in Bern, Dr. Philipp Hetmanczyk and Martin Bürgin of Zurich University talk to Thomas White about the Therwil Affair, a controversy that emerged in 2016 after two Swiss Muslim schoolboys declined to shake hands with their female teacher. The seemingly rather local, minor incident escalated into a major national debate and received global media attention. As the issue moved from one of school governance, to public values, to law and later immigration, the Therwil Affair became a focal point for national discussions on religious freedom, gender equality, civic duties, multi-ethnic integration and cultural identity in Switzerland. Following an explanation of the historical backdrop to contemporary Swiss ‘culture wars’ that the Therwil Affair spoke so clearly to, the discussion moves to how Swiss educational law has shifted subsequent to the Therwil Affair, with schools now expected to report to Swiss Immigration similar instances of supposed integration failure. Since schools are not merely centres for education but also sites for the teaching and reproduction of standardised norms and values, in countries of religious, ethnic and cultural diversity, those values and norms are contested. Perhaps what may be better, as Dr. Hetmanczyk suggests, is for schools to resist expectations that they should be cultivating a cultural homogeneity and instead focus on preparing pupils for moments of cultural difference.
Call for Proposal
Sarah Pettit Doctoral Fellowship in LGBT Studies – Queer Studies and Religion
2019 Doctoral Dissertation Workshop with Kathryn Lofton and Linn Tonstad
May 13-17, 2019 at Yale University
The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation has been proud to support more than 22,000 Fellows who collectively have an impressive record of scholarship, teaching, service, and public influence. We hope that you will give your students the opportunity to join this impressive network by sharing the following information about the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation’s 2019 doctoral dissertation fellowships:
The Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships
The Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships are designed to encourage original and significant study of religious and ethical values in all areas of human endeavor. Eligible proposals have religious or ethical values as a central concern, and come from fields within the humanities and social sciences. Ph.D. and Th.D. candidates who will be in the final year of dissertation writing during the 2019-2020 academic year may apply. The competition deadline is November 15, 2018.
Woodrow Wilson Dissertation Fellowships in Women’s Studies
The Woodrow Wilson Dissertation Fellowship in Women’s Studies encourages original and significant research about women that crosses disciplinary, regional, or cultural boundaries. Previous Fellows have explored such topics as transnational religious education for Muslim women, feminist technology design, the complex gender dynamics of transidentity management, women’s electoral success across racial and institutional contexts, women’s sports, and militarism and the education of American women. The competition deadline is October 15, 2018.
Please see the website for further information: woodrow.org