"Consuming Religion: Victuals and Consumption in Religious Traditions" - RSGSS Graduate Student Symposium

RSGSS Graduate Student Symposium
Call for Abstracts

Consuming Religion: Victuals and Consumption in Religious Traditions
University of Alberta
April 16 - 17, 2019

Keynote Speakers:
Dr. Rachel Berger (Concordia Univ. – Montreal) and Dr. Aaron Gross (Univ. of San Diego)

The Religious Studies Graduate Student Society from Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of Alberta invites graduate students and undergraduate students from all disciplines to participate in a symposium that explores the theme “Consuming Religion”. Presenters are encouraged to critically discuss and analyze the various ways that religious traditions seek to direct and manage consumption of substance and experience. In addition to victuals, larger questions of consumption include the consumption of material goods, literature, media, time, traditions, energies, and acts. In another sense, religion can also be “all consuming”, particularly in expressions of extremes. Participants are encouraged to submit proposals that reflect on questions such as the following:

• How do certain religious traditions seek to mandate consumption? of foods / drinks? substances? experiences?
• What practices and rituals do religious traditions employ to create religious purpose and meaning?
• What role do animals play in consumption?
• What are the implications of religious restrictions on consumables in a pluralistic democracy or theocracy?
• What ethical considerations need to be addressed in issues of religious dietary restrictions?
• How does religion mandate the consumption of goods? Clothing? Transportation? Real estate? Financial resources? Time?
• How are religious consumption restrictions used to construct or undermine identity in literature and movies?
•How do religious communities employ literature, social media, the internet and other resources to manage the consumption?
•How can we relate concepts of consumption to the lived expressions and experiences of the more extreme expressions of religious traditions? How does religion consume the individual, the community or society?

Guidelines for submissions: Please submit a 150-word abstract outlining the topic and main focus of the paper by February 28th, 2019. Please plan for 20 minutes of presentation time followed by 10 minutes of discussion. Proposals should include all contact information and institutional affiliation. Please send proposals, as well as any questions, to religious.studies.gss@gmail.com.

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