Joint Societies Conference in South Africa Cancelled

The Joint Societies conference in South Africa this summer has been cancelled. Please look out for further updates sometime after April 2020.

Call for Papers , AASR at the AAR November 2020

Please find below the Call for Papers for African Association for the Study of Religions
at the American Academy of Religion annual meeting Boston, November 2020.



Senegal Conference Update

As previously announced, the 9th AASR conference in Dakar, Senegal was originally scheduled for 29 July – 1 August 2020. However, with respect for the holy festival of Eid al-Adha, we made the decision to move the dates of the conference. We had hoped to reschedule sometime during Summer 2020, or even January 2021, but this has proved too challenging given a variety of scheduling conflicts. The AASR International Council, which is made up of the Executive Committee, as well as national and regional leaders of the AASR, has therefore made the decision to reschedule the conference to be held in the Summer of 2021.

In the first instance, we will attempt to work with CODESRIA on holding the conference in Dakar, Senegal, using the agreed upon theme: ‘Religions, Governance, and Social Transformations in Africa and the African Diaspora’. However, if this cooperation proves to be unworkable for Summer 2021, we would also request your support to explore other partners and locations. We could then take up the cooperation with CODESRIA at a future AASR conference.

It is important to keep two things in mind with this change of plans. First, is that constitutionally, we have a mandate to two hold conferences in Africa every 5 years. Given that we held our last conference in 2018, we are not behind schedule. Secondly, the elections of AASR officers will proceed as scheduled in 2020, and we will announce the results of the votes during the IAHR Congress that will take place in New Zealand. Handing over the Association’s responsibilities to the new executive will take place at that time. The recent revision to the Constitution allows for casting an online ballot, so if there are counter nominations all AASR members will be able to participate regardless of whether or not they are attending the Congress. See below for a detailed description of this procedure.

Thank you for your understanding and support.

Elias Kifon Bongmba
President AASR

Join Us! AASR Panels & Events @ AAR/SBL Denver 2018


Friends and Colleagues,

2018 Slim AM AAR-750x150-etouches

It’s almost that time again! As you make plans for the upcoming AAR conference November 17–20, please do plan on joining us for our sponsored/co-sponsored sessions, annual dinner, and business meeting. We look forward to seeing you there!

AASR Annual Dinner: 

Sunday (18th), 6:30PM (restaurant closes by 10:00PM)
The Ethiopian Restaurant
2816 E. Colfax Ave, Denver, CO
Phone: 303-322-5939

AASR Business Meeting:
Monday (19th), 9:00AM–11:30AM, P19–100, Convention Center-Mile High 3B (Lower Level), following the session on Empire, Religion, Health, and Human Capital in Africa.

AASR Sponsored Sessions (AAR): 

  • P18-200

African Association for the Study of Religions
Theme: Power and Subversion African Religious Spaces
Elana Jefferson-Tatum, Tufts University, Presiding
Sunday (18th) – 1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Convention Center-Mile High 2C (Lower Level)
African Christianity and the Intersection Between Faith, Traditional And Biomedical Healing
Dying and Rising as the Moon Does”: The Keiskamma Art Project, the Persistence of the Xhosa People, and the Possibility of Impossibility
Individualism, Gender and Spirituality: The Nigerian Experience
Unregistered Participant
Unregistered Participant
African Christianity and the Intersection between Faith, Traditional, and Biomedical Healing
Susie Paulik-Babka, University of San Diego
“Dying and Rising as the Moon Does”: The Keiskamma Art Project, the Persistence of the Xhosa People, and the Possibility of Impossibility
Bolaji Bateye, Obafemi Awolowo University
Unregistered Participant
“The Church as Family, Things Are No Longer What They Used to Be”: Individualism, Genderization, and Scripturalization of Spirituality, the Nigerian Experience

  • P19-100

African Association for the Study of Religions
Theme: Empire, Religion, Health, and Human Capital in Africa
Elias Kifon Bongmba, Rice University, Presiding
Monday (19th) – 9:00 AM–11:30 AM
Convention Center-Mile High 3B (Lower Level)
Empire, Religion, Health and Human Capital in Africa
Colonialism, Traditional African Religion, and the Catholic Church in Kenya
Humanizing Rituals in the American Presbyterian Congo Mission
Muhammad, Capitalist Ethics, and Muslim Reform in Burkina Faso
Timothy Carey, Boston College
“Who do the crowds say that I am?”: Colonialism, Traditional African Religion, and the Catholic Church in Kenya
Jesse Miller, Florida State University
Muhammad, Capitalist Ethics, and Muslim Reform in Burkina Faso
Unregistered Participant
Humanizing Rituals in the American Presbyterian Congo Mission
Business Meeting:
Elias Kifon Bongmba, Rice University
Corey Williams, Leiden University

AASR Co-Sponsored Sessions (SBL):

Ecclesiological Investigations Unit and African Association for the Study of Religion
Theme: Ecclesial Experiences in African Contexts
Aaron Hollander, Loyola University Chicago, Presiding
Monday (19th) – 5:30 PM–7:00 PM
Hyatt Regency-Capitol 5 (Fourth Level)

The three papers of this session present ecclesial experiences in three distinct African contexts that have made or ought to make substantial contributions to the wider life of the Christian churches and to their understandings of the church. The first paper starts from twentieth-century liturgical reforms in the Ethiopian Tewahedo Orthodox Church, and analyzes the way in which local, national, and diasporic identity changed in relation to the transition between orality and textuality in these reforms. The second paper begins from the historic experience of the Christian descendants of slaves from the Kongo kingdom, and from that history makes a constructive theological argument for the importance of the “slave template” in undermining ecclesiologies of power and strength. The third paper, drawing on the work of Ghanaian Presbyterian Kwame Bediako and of Cameroonian Catholic Jean-Marc Éla, highlights the incorporation of ancestors in African theology and ecclesiology as a gift to be received by the wider communion of churches.

Andrew Salzmann, Benedictine College
Agency and Identity in Ethiopian Liturgical Reform
Elochukwu Eugene Uzukwu, Duquesne University
Liberation and the Slave-Template: Catholic Church, Religions and Cultures, and the Transformation of Society
Ross Kane, Virginia Theological Seminary
Enlarging the Cloud of Witnesses: Ancestors and the Church in Kwame Bediako and Jean-Marc Éla

  • S19–200

Joint Session With: African Biblical Hermeneutics; African Association for the Study of Religions
Monday (19th) 1:00 PM–3:30 PM
Room: Range Ballroom – Crowne Plaza (CP)
Theme: Scripturalization and Orality in/as African Spirituality

Althea Spencer Miller, Drew University, Presiding
A. Paige Rawson, Drew University
The Archipelogics of Africana Biblical Hermeneutics: Africana, Orality, and Transtextual Biblical Interpretation in the Twenty-First Century (35 min)
Madipoane Masenya (Ngwan’a Mphahlele), University of South Africa
Navigating the Collusions and Contradictions of African Orality and the Digital Age in Understandings of the Bible (35 min)
Knut Holter, VID Specialized University, Norway
Isak—the Son of the Rainmaker—and the Bible: An Example of Resistance Hermeneutics in Zululand in the 1860s and 70s (35 min)
Sara Fretheim, University of Edinburgh
“Kasakyerew ho nimdefo, mo!” (Those gifted in the knowledge of writing of language, congratulations!): Kwame Bediako, Mother-Tongue Theology, and Orality—African Epistemologies and Spirituality (35 min)
Discussion (10 min)


CfP: Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians July 2019

Call for Papers
Circle of Concerned African Women Theologian 5th Pan-African Conference
The Department of Theology and Religious Studies
University of Botswana
Gaborone, Botswana
July 2-5, 2019

Conference Theme
Mother Earth and Mother Africa in Theological/Religious/Cultural/Philosophical Imagination
As the Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians celebrates thirty years of existence and impressive productivity, the fifth continent wide conference shall be held in Gaborone, Botswana in July 2-5, 2019. Given that the land is often constructed as female gendered and the oppression of women is interlinked with the oppression of the Earth; and given that it is widely acknowledged that we live in the era of global warming – which is humanly induced and of which many have also linked with anthropocentric religious/cultural/theological perspectives — the conference theme calls for research papers that interrogate the link between gender, land, race, class, ethnicity, colonialism, globalization and environmental sustainability. It solicits for papers that reimagine human relationships with the Earth from paradigms of liberation.

Research papers that are using various methods and theories; drawn from diverse religious, cultural, philosophical and theological traditions, are solicited to investigate the intersection of gender, religion and the environment, while analyzing the relationships between women and the land of the past, present and future. Papers that re-read religious/philosophical/cultural texts in the light of Sustainable Development Goals are invited. Researchers may seek to describe, expose, interpret, reinterpret, theorize, reimagine the link between social categories, religion and Earth oppression as well as propose liberating perspectives from traditions and sources of their choice such as African oral cultures, Quran, Bible, African creative works, World Religions, amongst others. Several volumes will be published, following the conference, as it is expected that contributors will receive and integrate constructive feedback from conference participants and through the process of peer reviewing.

Interested researchers are invited to submit abstracts from any one of the following sub-themes:

African Religion/Cultural/Philosophy/Oral Literature and the Earth
• Environmental Imagination in African rituals and taboos
• Oral Literature: Proverbs, folktales, sayings, myths and songs
• African Cosmology and Environmental Sustainability
• African Imagination of Community and Environmental Sustainability
• Botho/Ubuntu, Gender and Environmental Sustainably
• Gender, Religion and Access to Land Ownership
• African Colonial History and the Environment
• Globalization, Global Warming and Gender in Africa
• Sustainable Development Goals, Mother Earth and African Oratures

Biblical Literature and the Earth
• Creation Stories, Gender and Ecological Justice
• Environmental Imagination in the Pentateuch
• Earth constructions in prophetic literature
• Ecological Imagination in Wisdom Literature
• Markan/Lukan/Matthean/Johannine Green Christologies
• Ecological Imagination in Pauline and Deutro -Pauline Literature
• Ecological Imagination in Apocalyptic Literature (Revelation)
• Jesus//Paul, Gender and the Environmental Imagination
• Earth-friendly African Biblical Hermeneutics
• Sustainable Development Goals, Mother Earth and Biblical Texts

Earth and Theological Imaginations
• Salvation Reimagined
• Mission Reimagined
• Incarnation and ecological Justice
• Earth-centered Worship
• Creation-centered Eschatology
• Earth-centered Trinitarian models
• Earth Construction in Christian Hymns
• Creation-centered Theology
• Sustainable Development Goals, Mother Earth & Theological Imagination

World Religions and Environmental Imagination
• Islam, Gender and Construction of the Earth
• Christianity, Gender and Ecology
• Hinduism, Gender and Ecology
• Confucianism, Gender and Ecology
• Colonialism, Globalization, Gender and Earth Care
• Sustainable Development Goals, Mother Earth & World Religions

African Novels and Creative Non-Fiction Writers
• Environmental Imagination among African Women Writers
• Environment Imagination African Male Writers
• Colonialism, Land and Gender in African Creative Writers
• Globalization, Land and Gender in African Creative Writers
• Global Warming, Land and Gender in Creative Non-Fiction
• Sustainable Development Goals, Mother Earth & Creative Writers

Schedule of Production
1. Call for Papers: November 10, 2018
2. Deadline for Submission of Abstracts: March 1, 2019
3. Deadline for Financial Registration June 1, 2019
4. Arrival and Conference Registration Date: July 1, 2019
5. Conference Dates: July 2-4, 2019, University of Botswana
6. Submission of Reviewed Papers: September 1, 2019

Conference Fees and Registration
• Normal Registration: P800.00 ($80usd)
• UB staff member Registration: P600.00 ($60usd)
• Student Registration: P400.00 ($40 usd)

Conference Contact Persons:
Please send your registration fees and 400-word abstract and short bio to:
• Dr Sidney Berman:
• Malebogo Kgalemang:

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