Call for Papers (Please, feel free to distribute)

SQS    –    Society    of    Queer    Studies    in    Finland    invites    submissions    for    the    12th    Turku    seminar    on    the    intersections    of    queer,    religion    and    spirituality.    This    year    the    seminar    hosts    the    International    Autumn    School    and    conference    of    The    International    Association    for    the    study    of    Religion    and    Gender    (IARG).   


XII SQS seminar & International Autumn School and Conference of IARG

September 19–20, 2019, Åbo Akademi University, Finland 

Arken campus, Fabriksgatan 2

SQS – Society of Queer Studies in Finland invites submissions for the 12th Turku seminar on the intersections of queer, religion and spirituality. This year the seminar hosts the International Autumn School and conference of The International Association for the study of Religion and Gender (IARG). As a forum for scholars, students, and activists, the event promotes queer scholarship and networking across disciplines and organizations interested in the subject. The organizing partners also include Finnish Society for the Study of Religion (SUS), Center for the Study of Christian Cultures (CSCC), Gender studies in Åbo Akademi University and University of Turku, Study of Religion in Åbo Akademi University and University of Turku.

The theme of the conference and the autumn school is „Queer Shepherds“. The theme may be understood as governance and authority in religious and spiritual contexts that involve normativizing practices, social control, discriminatory processes or even abuse of sexual and gender minorities. The term „Queer Shepherds“ may also signify a variety of guiding practices, rituals and leadership that shape new religious and spiritual subjectivities and empower queer agencies, often transcending dominant hierarchical structures. The broad theme also addresses counter-narratives and re- interpretations that contribute to social change. Issues relating to „Queer Shepherds“ can be critically explored on several levels of analyses, cutting through traditions, arts, organizations and everyday mundane lives. It can be scrutinized in light of how forms of authority are currently changing and adapting to new cultural and societal practices, or how the conceptual trichotomy of religion, spirituality and secularity needs to be deconstructed in order to reveal the logics that constitute „Queer Shepherding“.

Potential strands of inquiry may include, but are not limited to:

–       Shepherds / Shepherding in queer communities

–       Queer Shepherding in religious / spiritual communities

–       Gender, sexuality or sex scandals in church / religious / spiritual communities

–       Regulation / guiding of sexualities or sexual relationships in church / religious / spiritual communities

–       Queer Shepherds and society / legislation / politics

–       Queer Shepherds in narratives, art and popular culture (literature, myths, rituals, media, music, films, performance arts, etc.)

Abstract submission

We encourage abstract submissions from undergraduates to advanced scholars. Most of the workshops will be in English, but papers in Finnish or Swedish are also warmly welcome. Please submit your abstract of max 1500 characters (including spaces) via the following link by June 16, 2019: 

Please see full CFP, also in Finnish and Swedish, in the attachment.

The academic program consists of keynote lectures, workshops, and presentations. Professor Melissa M. Wilcox (UC Riverside, USA) is one of the keynote speakers. The other keynote speakers and the full program will be announced later.

Warmly welcome! 
On behalf of the organizing team,

Eetu Kejonen (SQS) 

Malin Fredriksson (SUS) 

Peter Nynäs (ÅA)