Friday, July 10, 2009

The Changing Face of Christianity

Although I got a very kind "heads up" from Gordon Lynch, we've just had the announcement for the British Sociological Association's Sociology of Religion Study Group's 2010 conference on the email list (no website as yet). The conference title is "The Changing Face of Christianity in the 21st Century," and, Gordon was right, I think it'll be a great opportunity to present some more of my thesis. Right now it's just the call for papers, with more details to follow, but the conference will be at Edinburgh University (co-hosted by the Institute of Geography and the School of Divinity) from 6th - 8th Apri 2010. Here's the conference blurb and call for papers:

"Christianity in the 21st century is characterised by rapid change, by both steep decline in membership in some areas, but resurgence in other contexts. At the same time, contemporary Christianity incorporates (sometimes uncomfortably) new forms and hybridisations. The lived experience and performance of Christianity in the West appears to be shifting according to influences from late-modern consumer and media cultures. World Christianities are increasingly influential and migration and diaspora Christianities are (re) shaping Christianity in the West. Meanwhile, far from disappearing from the agendas and language of the public arena, Christianity continues to excite debates around the place and importance of religion in the public arena, as well as discourses of citizenship, equality and well-being.

"We invite proposals for papers which explore issues surrounding the broad theme of the conference. We particularly welcome papers which fall into three sub-themes we have identified:

  • Contemporary Christian Performance and Belief;
  • World Christianities and migration or diaspora Christianities;
  • Christianity in the Public Arena.

Individual paper proposals (max. 200 words) or proposals for panels of three or four related papers (max. 300 words) should be submitted by October 31st, 2009 to Giselle Vincett (at

Topics may include: World Christianities; post-Christianity; decline of Christianity, as well as Christian growth or resurgence; mission and reverse mission; Christianity and young people; the influence of alternative spiritualities on Christianity; hyphenated Christian identities (Buddhist-Christians, Pagan-Christians, etc.); new Christian movements; contemporary pilgrimage or (youth) festivals; Christianity in areas of social deprivation; social movements and Christianity; Christianity and the (new) media; Christianity and popular culture; Christianity and gender; Christianity and sexuality; Christianity and other religions, including indigenous religions; contemporary Christian ritual; Christianity and economics; Christianity and politics; Christianity and education; Christianity and the law; migration and diaspora Christianities; Christianity and healthcare; Christianity and public life.

Plenty for me to get stuck into. I'm thinking of presenting a piece that takes a broad look at my thesis and draws implications for the future of Christianity. So, it'll reflect on my general thesis argument but mostly be taken from my (as yet unwritten) conclusions, and be entitled something like "The UK Emerging Church Milieu: A/theism and the Future of Christian Spirituality."


Anonymous said...

sounda an interesting conference


Katharine Moody said...

Yeah, the British Sociological Association's Sociology of Religion study group know how to through good shindigs! x

Katharine Moody said...

I can't spell. *throw* xxx