We live today in a world in which popular culture—Hollywood, Billboard Hot 100, professional sports, New York Times bestsellers, etc.—constitutes our lingua franca, our society’s “common language.” Pop culture functions today as a key location for the shared exploration of what it means to be truly human. For this reason, it is appropriate that Christians attentively engage pop culture in a scholarly fashion. Doing so not only helps to bridge the divide between the academy and the wider society, but it also disrupts the temptation toward religious insularity and creatively expands the horizons of Christian self-reflection. For these and other reasons, the thoughtful analysis of religion in popular culture is an important task today.
Koinonia is seeking original paper proposals on religion in popular culture that interact with recent discussions in a particular area of study. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:
Theology of Culture – Film and Theology – Cultural Theory – Postmodernity – Sacred and the Profane – LOST – Myth and Fantasy – Horror and the Horrific – The Hollywood Jesus – Christ-figures – Stories of Sin and Redemption – Sport and Spectacle – Technology – Image and Icon – Pop Music – Philip Pullman – Cormac McCarthy – Apocalypse and the Post-Apocalyptic – The Question of “Redemptive Violence” – Cultural History – World Cinema – Harry Potter – U2 – Sexism and Heterosexism in Contemporary Culture – Avatars and Virtual Reality – Superheroes
Submissions are encouraged from a variety of disciplines, including philosophy, biblical studies, church history, theology, ethics, and practical theology. Proposals that approach the topic from a feminist, African American, Latino/a, and/or other similar context are especially encouraged. Winning proposals will be selected based on strength and originality of argument, as well as the potential for interdisciplinary dialogue.
One or more author/s will be invited to present a paper at the Koinonia Annual Forum during a visit to Princeton Theological Seminary in February 2011. All expenses for attendance at the forum, including travel and lodging, will be paid for these authors. Forum papers will be published in the 2011 issue of Koinonia Journal.
Authors must currently be enrolled as doctoral students in an accredited graduate program. Paper proposals should be 750-1500 words in length. Proposals may be sent via email to koinonia.journal-at-ptsem-dot-edu, as may inquiries or requests for an expanded prompt.
Koinonia is published annually by Ph.D. students under the auspices of Princeton Theological Seminary and is indexed in the ATLA Religion Database and available in theological libraries across the country.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: November 1, 2010