Art Remillard, North American Undergrad. Research Conference in Religion

Last year, I started an undergraduate conference at St. Francis University. Long story short, it went far better than expected (side note: two of John Fea’s students gave outstanding presentations). So this year, I’ve teamed with Bryan Rennie (Westminster College) to offer what promises to be a bigger and better event. Of course, as with any conference, we need quality presenters. So please, my dear blog readers, if you’re anywhere near western PA, and have a handful of good students, encourage them to attend. And bring yourself too! In addition to helping create a collegial environment, professors will serve as judges and offer “faculty consultations” on Sunday (read below). I’ll be updating readers in the coming months, sharing my thoughts on the value of this sort of educational exercise. Meanwhile, if it is feasible, please mark this on your calendar and tell your students!

Call For Papers: The North American Undergraduate Conference in Religion and Philosophy Theme: “Talking About Religion”

Date: March 7-9, 2008
Westminster College, New Wilmington, PA

Deadline: 150 word abstract, January 15; complete submission, February 11, 2008
Bryan Rennie, Westminster College, (e-mail)
David Goldberg, Westminster College, (e-mail)
Arthur Remillard, St. Francis University, (e-mail)

The North American Undergraduate Conference in Religion and Philosophy is organized by Westminster College, PA and St. Francis University, PA with the support of the North American Association for the Study of Religion and the Heinz Lecture Series at Westminster. Undergraduate papers from any discipline on any subject in Religious Studies and Philosophy are sought for an undergraduate conference to take place at Westminster College, New Wilmington, PA from March 7– 9 2008. Public events and discussions, including “faculty consultations” in which the faculty members who accompany their students can share their specific expertise, will take place on Friday evening and Sunday morning. Student presentations will take place on Saturday, March 8.

Although papers on any subject will be considered, those that focus on the conference theme of "Talking about Religion" will be given priority: how can we encourage an open, rational and, productive discussion of religion? How can we promulgate such dialogue and in what terms can we most appropriately discuss this highly charged matter?

Subject to the discretion of a panel of judges cash prizes of $250 each will be awarded to the best paper in Religion, in Philosophy, and in a special category for a “non–traditional” presentation that deviates from the traditional format of the reading of a standard academic paper.

Traditional papers of approximately 2,000 words in length, requiring no more than 20 minutes to read, are sought, as well as “non–traditional” presentations.

Scheduled featured speakers are Bob Abernethy, for ten years the host of the PBS weekly program, “Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly,” who has considerable professional expertise in the area of talking about religion; and Justin Barrett, former associate director of the International Culture and Cognition Consortium and a founding editor of the Journal of Cognition and Culture. Dr. Barrett is the author of Why Would Anyone Believe in God? and was the International Coordinator of Experimental Research Programmes for the Institute of Cognition and Culture at the Queen's University, Belfast. Currently, he is the Senior Researcher at Oxford University's Centre for Anthropology and Mind in the School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography.

Abstracts of c. 150 words should be sent by January 14, 2008. Please include your full name, paper title, institution, e-mail, phone number, and the name and contact information of your major professor. Complete submissions by February 11, 2008. Submissions and any inquiries should be addressed to Bryan Rennie (e-mail).


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