The Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies, a referred academic journal dedicated to publishing cultural studies scholarship from both established and emerging scholars, is currently soliciting submissions for an upcoming special issue on:RELIGION, SECULARISM, AND CULTURAL STUDIES
Guest Editors: Lori Branch and Everett Hamner
Culture may be, as Raymond Williams informs us, “everyday,” but as it is reified in cultural studies practice, it is rarely religious. The Blackwell Companion to Cultural Studies (2001), for instance, uncovers not a hint in 579 pages or a detailed index that religion operates in culture at all: no prayer, no yoga, no Religious Right, abstinence campaigns, televangelism, no daily practice of Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, or Islam. And this, despite the daily news, world politics, and a cadre of critics hailing the “return of the religious” to critical discourse. In her Presidential Address to the Modern Language Association in December 2003, Mary Louise Pratt proclaimed the urgency of the interdisciplinary study of religion in our literature departments. “Who can doubt today,” she asked, “the need to study secularism and religiosity from every viewpoint we can muster?” As Stanley Fish has recently pointed out in The Chronicle of Higher Education, the distinctions between reason and faith, truth and belief, have been increasingly called into question in culture and academia, and religion promises, in his words, to “succeed high theory and the triumvirate of race, gender, and class as the center of intellectual energy in the academy.”
This special issue of The Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies seeks to speak in and to cultural studies’ silence on religion and secularism, and to gain a critical perspective on that silence and the reasons it has existed. This issue will explore the conversations that can take place between cultural studies and highlight the new outpouring of work from a variety of critical perspectives that points toward vibrant engagement in the coming years with the historical study of the mutual transformation of religion and secularism in modernity.
We solicit submissions on any aspect of religion, secularism, and cultural studies, from any time period, literature, or media, and particularly those that implicitly or explicitly address the following questions: What would a cultural studies approach to religious texts, behaviors and artifacts look like? How would this affect or challenge “secular” cultural studies? What is at stake in the secular portrayal of everyday life created by the silence surrounding religion in cultural studies? How can recent critical studies of the emergence of secularism in modernity?
Please submit papers no later than 7/1/05 to:
Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies
308 English-Philosophy Building
University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA 52242-1492
Two hard copies of the manuscript and a disk, preferably in Microsoft Word, should be provided. Manuscripts cannot be returned unless a self-addressed envelope with US postage is provided. Submissions should be no longer than 30 pages and should be prepared following the MLA Style Manual.
For more information about contributing or subscribing to this journal, please contact the managing editor at firstname.lastname@example.org . The journal’s web site, which includes excerpts from previous issues, editorial board and other information, is at: http://www.uiowa.edu/~ijcs .