2023 Conference

Visions and Visionaries:
Animating Texts
Liberative Experience
Contemporary Realities


March 12-13, 2023, Boston College

Call for Papers

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Special Theme 2023: Visions and Visionaries: Animating Texts, Liberative Experiences, and Contemporary Realities

Muhammad hearing the angel Gabriel telling him to recite. Moses on the mountain, glimpsing God walking by. Bodhisattvas emerging from the earth at the Buddha’s behest. Krishna revealing himself to Arjuna, who sees only with a divine eye.

From textual origins until the modern day, visionaries inspired religious identities and teachings in various traditions through their visions, theophanies, encounters, and mystical moments. Through these visions something previously unseen becomes visible and we glimpse a deeper picture of reality and truth. Traditions have preserved, shared, and puzzled over these visions and visionaries, sometimes in secret, wondering what on earth they could possibly mean. Today, we live in a world of deep space telescopes and electron microscopes, a world where we seem to be able to see everything that is. We also live on a razor’s edge, teetering between sustainability and catastrophe, democracy and authoritarianism, pluralism and fundamentalism, progress and revanchist chauvinism. Can these visions and visionary texts speak to this moment in our history? What particular methodological insights emerge from this exercise? Are there ways in which the visions from multiple traditions can speak together or to one another?

The 20th Engaging Particularities Conference invites graduate students and emerging scholars working in the fields of comparative theology, interreligious dialogue, theology of religions, religious studies, and missiology, to submit comparative proposals that engage visionaries and visionary texts that inform religious traditions. Strong proposals will bring visions of two traditions into conversation or will apply these visionary texts to our contemporary contexts. Also preferred are proposals that consider methodological reflections on approaches toward visionary texts.

General Call: We also invite proposals on critical issues and themes from various disciplinary perspectives (such as but not limited to ethics, systematics, historical studies, biblical studies, philosophy, sociology, anthropology, etc.) in four areas: comparative theology, interreligious dialogue, theology of religions, and missiology.

Submission Guidelines: To submit a proposal, please email an abstract of no more than 250 words to epbcsubmissions@gmail.com by December 15, 2022. Please indicate whether you are submitting for the special focus or general call, and include your contact information, institution, and program. Funds may be available on a limited basis for participants to help supplement travel expenses. For more information or questions, please reach out to the planning team at epbcsubmissions@gmail.com, or visit this web page.

Keynote Lecture

In addition to the wonderful participants from around the world, we will also have Professor Catherine Cornille as our guest speaker for the Public Keynote.