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2017 Program Committee Proceedings

American Academy of Religion Program Committee Meeting
Atlanta, Georgia • January 6–8, 2017

Program Committee Roster
2016 Annual Meeting Report
2017 Annual Meeting Program and Reviews
Other Business
Committee Deliberation of Program Unit Reviews
Proposals for New Program Units
Tools Used in the Program Committee's Evaluation Processes


Program Committee Roster

Kathryn McClymond

Kathryn McClymond
Georgia State University

Program Committee Chair
2017–2019

Grace Ji-Sun Kim

Grace Ji-Sun Kim
Earlham College

2016–2018

 

Julie Byrne

Julie Byrne
Hofstra University

2016–2020

Laurie Patton

Laurie Patton
Middlebury College

2017

Martha Finch

Martha Finch
Missouri State University

2015–2019

Najeeba Syeed-Miller

Najeeba Syeed-Miller
Claremont School of Theology

2016–2020

Shreena Gandhi

Shreena Gandhi
Michigan State University

2014–2018

Linda Thomas

Linda Thomas
Lutheran School of Theology, Chicago

2014–2018

 

Michelle Gonzalez Maldonado

Michelle Gonzalez Maldonado
University of Miami

2015–2019

Deborah Whitehead

Deborah Whitehead
University of Colorado

2017–2021

Juliane Hammer

Juliane Hammer
University of North Carolina

2017–2021

Jack Fitzmier Jack Fitzmier
AAR Executive Director
Tracey Hucks

Tracey Hucks
Davidson College

2017–2021

Robert Puckett Robert Puckett
AAR Director of Meetings

Tao Jiang

Tao Jiang
Rutgers University

2016–2020

Kathleen McMahan Kathleen McMahan
AAR Administrative Assistant

 2016 Annual Meeting Report

2016 Post-Annual Meeting Survey Narrative

2016 Post-Annual Meeting Survey Results


2017 Annual Meeting Program and Reviews

Program Unit Chair Changes

Approving 2017 Call for Proposals

Brainstorming 2017 Reviewers and Assigning Lead Readers


Other Business

A. Consideration of Special Requests from Program Units

B. Merger of Latina/o Critical and Comparative Studies Unit and Religion in Latin American and the Caribbean Unit into Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit – approved for 5 years; 3 sessions

C. Requiring AAR membership for Annual Meeting proposals – passed unanimously

D. Related Scholarly Organizations (RSOs) renewal applications and review procedures


Committee Deliberation of Program Unit Reviews

Program Unit

Decision

African Religions

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Animals and Religion

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Christian Spirituality

1-year Renewal with  2 sessions; External Review

Cognitive Science of Religion

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Comparative Religious Ethics

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Ethics

5-year Renewal; 4 sessions

History of Christianity

1-year Renewal with  4 sessions; External Review

Japanese Religions

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Native Traditions in the Americas

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Psychology, Culture, and Religion

1-year Renewal with  2 sessions; External Review

Qur’an

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Religion and Science Fiction

5-year Renewal; 1 session

Religion and the Social Sciences

5-year Renewal; 4 sessions

Religion in Europe

5-year Renewal; 1 session

Religion, Film, and Visual Culture

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Religion, Media, and Culture

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Religion, Sport, and Play

5-year Renewal; 1 session

Tantric Studies

5-year Renewal; 2 sessions

Teaching Religion

5-year Renewal; 5 sessions

Theology and Religious Reflection

5-year Renewal; 5 sessions

Tillich: Issues in Theology, Religion, and Culture

5-year Renewal; 1 session

Vatican II Studies

1-year Renewal with 1 session; External Review

Women of Color: Scholarship, Teaching, and Activism

5-year Renewal; 1 session


Proposals for New Program Units

Seminars

Decision

Navaratri

Approved for  5 years; 1 session

Origen and the Roots of “Human Freedom” and “Human Dignity” in the West

Approved for  5 years; 1 session

Political Theology

Approved for  5 years; 1 session

Race, Coloniality, and Philosophy of Religion

Declined

Religious Reflections on Friendship

Declined

Religion and National Security

Declined

Religion and Families in North America

Approved for  5 years; 1 session

Religion, Attire, and Adornment in North America

Approved for  5 years; 1 session

Transnational Religious Expression: Between Asia and North America

Approved for  5 years; 1 session


Tools Used in the Program Committee's Evaluation Processes

A. Program Unit’s Annual Reports

B. Program Unit’s Five-year Self Review

This document states the aims of the unit, its procedures, its programming accomplishments, and a rationale for the unit’s continued existence. Among the criteria deemed relevant to the self-review include:

  1. The extent to which the field of interest represented by the unit continues to reflect a major area of interest and work for a significant portion of the Academy's membership; one possible metric by which this may be measured is the number and quality of proposals the unit receives.
  2. The intellectual rigor, imagination, conceptual richness, and distinction of the work carried on by the unit, whether through the presentation of papers, the sponsorship of discussions, or the publication of proceedings.
  3. The degree of commitment that the unit's constituency exhibits to the ongoing life of the unit; one possible metric by which this may be measured is the attendance at the unit’s Annual Meeting sessions.
  4. The procedural health of the unit, including leadership practices, such as mechanisms for selecting new chairs and steering committee members; communication within the unit, between units, and with the AAR; and the unit’s proposal review process and other decision making practices.
  5. The extent to which the unit's constituency has been afforded an opportunity to participate in the sessions (with attention to diversity of seniority, race, ethnicity, nationality, and gender among participants).
  6. The unit's range of appeal to those members of the Academy whose own fields of specialization do not typically fall within the field of interest represented by the unit and the unit's ability to involve such people periodically in its programs; one possible metric by which this may be measured is the number of sessions which the unit cosponsors with other Program Units.
  7. Over the course of the next five years, the promise the unit offers for advancing the academic study of religion, or the relation of that study to other disciplines.

C. External Reviewer Reports (if applicable)

If a Unit requests a change of status, additional sessions, requests an external review, or if the Program Committee, after its examination of the Program Unit’s metrics or Program Unit’s self-review, decides to follow-up with an external review, a reviewer will be selected by the Program Committee. Efforts are made to locate a member who has expertise in the field and who is able to play the role of participant-observer in the unit’s review.

The reviewer’s written report, is based on

  1. attending as many sessions of the unit as possible during the Annual Meeting, including the unit’s business meeting(s);
  2. personal interviews with the unit chairs, members of the steering committee and a cross-section of participants at Annual Meetings both current and previous (if that can be arranged); and
  3. the unit’s written self-review.

D. Special consideration of creative sessions, strategies, experiments

E. Quantitative data collected in connection with the Annual Meeting

Some of this data is derived from the PAPERS System, but also from the Annual Reports (see graphs here for data on Proposals, Sessions, Attendance, Acceptances, Selectivity, Proposal Ratio, Cosponsorships, and Collaborativity).