Call for panels and papers: Section on “Transnational Religion, Conflict and Dialogue”, 9th Pan-European Conference of the European International Studies Association (EISA)
Wednesday 23 – Saturday 26 September 2015, Giardini Naxos, Sicily, Italy
Section Convenors: Jeffrey Haynes, London Metropolitan University, firstname.lastname@example.org, and Luca Ozzano, University of Turin, email@example.com
Prospective participants can propose both panels and single papers, by logging in at the address https://www.conftool.pro/paneuropean2015/ and submitting an abstract of up to 200 words by January 15, 2015. Please also send an email to the address firstname.lastname@example.org. Prospective panel convenors, particularly, are also requested to signal their interest by sending an email to the same address, possibly by December 20, 2014. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch also to contact us for further information.
For a long time, the discipline of international relations has showed reluctance to take into account religion, both because of the dominant realist state-centric perspective, and as a consequence of the so-called secularization paradigm, regarding religion as an irrelevant or utterly negative factor. Scholars, particularly, widely accepted the so-called post-Westphalian pillars, according to which states are the only legitimate actors in international relations, and religion must not significantly influence politics, especially at the international level. As a consequence, until the recent rise of radical Islam, transnational religious actors were not regarded as legitimate actors in international affairs. Only since the 1990s, as a consequence of the growing relevance of such actors, often bypassing states, the discipline of international relations has started to take them into account. Researches have thus flourished about Muslim movements, but also about the transnational role of the Catholic Church and the US-based Evangelical organizations. A growing corpus of literature about non universalist religions, such as Hinduism, has also developed, mainly in relation to the role of the diaspora communities. As a whole, researches have highlighted that transnational religion can become a source of understanding and dialogue, but also of conflict and violence. This section aims at casting light on both sides of this dichotomy by analyzing transnational religious movements belonging to different religious traditions and geographic/cultural areas both oriented towards conflict, violence and terrorism, and oriented towards peace, dialogue and reconciliation.