The Journal of Interreligious Studies™

Special Issue Call for Papers

The Color of God: Faith, Race, and Interreligious Dialogue

Funlayo E. Wood, Guest Editor
Axel Takács, Editor-in-Chief

Deadline Extended. New submission deadline: December 2, 2016

Race and religion have been strange bedfellows since the beginning of contact between diverse peoples. While religion is culturally and racially bound, with each cultural group traditionally having its own way of conceptualizing and worshiping the Divine, the post-Enlightenment tendency to theorize religion as an unbounded sui generis entity has frequently denied these boundaries—this despite the fact that racism and theories of racial difference have historically been expressed in distinctly religious terms. The purported racial inferiority of peoples of African, Native American, and Asian descent, for example, was historically buttressed by their religious difference, with the indigenous religions of these groups being classified at the bottom of a hierarchy that traditionally placed Christianity at the top, Judaism and Islam in the middle, and all other faith traditions below. This racial-religious hierarchy’s continued existence—and denial—acts as an oft-unspoken impediment to interreligious dialogue and cooperation whereby those peoples and traditions existing in the lower third of this pyramid frequently go underrepresented. As well, when interchanges do take place between racially and religiously diverse groups, the direct impact of racial and cultural difference and bias on these dialogues—how, for example, racism undergirds Islamophobia and religious bias plays into anti-black racism—often goes undiscussed. This issue invites contributions from scholars, faith leaders, and scholar-practitioners of diverse racial, cultural and religious backgrounds that explore these dynamic intersections between race, religion, and inter-religious dialogue with topics including but not limited to:

- Case studies of current events that highlight the intersections between race and religion
- Historical and contemporary connections between race, racism, and religion
- Challenges and opportunities presented by engagement in interracial and/or cross cultural inter- and intrareligious dialogues - Conflict and cooperation between racially and religiously diverse groups
- Strategies for peaceful coexistence between racially and religiously diverse communities

For consideration submit your name, title, affiliation and a 300-500-word abstract to guest editor Funlayo E. Wood via email at EZWood@fas.harvard.edu by December 2, 2016. Please use the subject “JIRS Submission.” Complete manuscripts due March 31, 2017.

Submission Guidelines:
All submissions must be the original, previously unpublished work of the author(s). Authors are also advised to read about the Journal and the previous issue prior to submitting an article. Submissions should be between 2,500 and 8,000 words, including references and a 100-word abstract. They should adhere to the Sixteenth Edition of the Chicago Manual of Style, utilizing endnotes for citations and footnotes for discursive elaboration. Co-authored articles are welcomed and encouraged.

About the Journal:
The Journal of Interreligious Studies™ is a forum for academic, social, and timely issues affecting religious communities around the world. Published online, it is designed to increase both the quality and frequency of interchanges between religious groups and their leaders and scholars. By fostering conversation, the Journal hopes to increase religious literacy, contribute to the field of inter-religious hermeneutics, and address the issues surrounding inter-religious relations, dialogue, theology, and communication. It is a collaboration of Hebrew College and the Boston University School of Theology. As a premier electronic publication, The Journal of Inter-Religious Studies™ is poised to substantially impact inter-religious dialogue and work. With the understanding that clergy and lay leaders greatly affect the dynamics within their congregations and religious movements, the Journal offers a novel way to establish long-term dialogue and collaboration between religious communities.