LINGUIST List 27.1565

Mon Apr 04 2016

Calls: Anthropological Ling/USA

Editor for this issue: Amanda Foster <>

Date: 02-Apr-2016
From: Deina Rabie <>
Subject: American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting
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Full Title: American Anthropological Association
Short Title: AAA

Date: 16-Nov-2016 - 20-Nov-2016
Location: Arlington, VA, USA
Contact Person: Deina Rabie
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): Anthropological Linguistics

Call Deadline: 06-Apr-2016

Meeting Description:

Prayer, Poetry, and Song: Cultivating Religious Sound in a Secular World

In a world that seems increasingly beset by friction between religious and secular factions and among religious subgroups themselves, the ways in which religious identities are cultivated come under increasing scrutiny. In contradistinction to the modern, rational and secularist project that prioritizes the eyes and mind over the other senses, this panel seeks to examine the ways in which sound, poetics, and verbal art anchor religious practices that, in turn, become sites of communal constitution and political contestation. One mode of competition, for example, is through the creation of soundscapes, like the Islamic aṭhān or call to prayer, that index and represent groups within a socio-political space. Another is through the use of congregational song and poetry to mark communal ritual practice as well as a subversive means of political protest. A final example is the deployment of pop songs, rewritten as religious protest songs by groups like the Westboro Baptist Church, and the countering use of intentional silence and laughter by secularists at public demonstrations.

Accordingly, the panel seeks to address the following questions: How do sound, song, and poetics create the infrastructure of community making? In pluralistic spaces of public dissemination, in what ways are sonic religious interpellations taken up as intended, and in what ways are they taken up for senses in which they are not intended (Spadola 2014)? How do embodied practices signal the different ways public deployment of religious sound is taken up? Moreover, how does the iteration of these ritual moments (Derrida 1971) become sites of continual group making and remaking (Latour 2005)? What kinds of affective relationships are generated through such practices? How do the practices of listening, cultivated inattention (Larkin 2014), singing, and silence index competing ideologies and create sites of contestation between religious and nonreligious entities and different religious groups?

Dr. Emilio Spadola, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Colgate University is the confirmed discussant on this panel.

Call for Abstracts:

Abstract length:

No more than 500 words

Abstract format:

Attachment (word document)
Email :

Important Dates:

Abstract Deadline: 7 April 2016
Notification of acceptance: 11 April 2016

Conference link:

Page Updated: 04-Apr-2016