Literature as Vocation

deadline for submissions: 
December 1, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Western Region Conference on Christianity and Literature
contact email: 

Why do we do what we do in the field of literary studies? Why does it matter? To whom? What redemptive or transformative work does literature do? When? Where? How? We invite reflection and conversation about the different kinds of work literature does to and through writers, readers, teachers, thinkers, and scholars. Our topic is intentionally broad as we seek to inspire, encourage, and celebrate the creation, interpretation, and appreciation of literature from any historical period and any genre. Our format is inclusive with panels for professors, graduate and undergraduate students, as well as scholars from multiple disciplines including English, Modern Languages, Theology, Education, Psychology, Science, and Humanities.

Suggested topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • ·       the work of re-enchantment: magical realism, refreshment, joy, delight
  • ·       the work of transformation: secular/post-secular accounts of religious experience, narratives of conversion and de-conversion, spiritual autobiography
  • ·       the work of empathy: emotion and affect, caregiving, accounts of suffering, grief, and illness
  • ·       the work of social justice: remembrance, rediscovery, lament, protest, reconciliation, peace
  • ·       the work of stewardship: ecology, creation care, apocalypse

E-mail your one-paragraph abstracts and session proposals by December 1, 2019 to Dr. Patricia Brown at Undergraduate students must submit their entire paper for consideration; eligible undergraduate papers will be entered into the national CCL Undergraduate Writing Contest for a cash prize and publication on the CCL website. Graduate students are encouraged to apply for the CCL Travel Grant. For more details on these undergraduate and graduate opportunities, visit


Keynote Speakers:

Dr. Karen Swallow Prior

Liberty University

Author of Cultural Engagement: A Crash Course in Contemporary Issues (2019) and On Reading Well: Finding the Good Life Through Great Books (2018)


Dr. Tae Sung

California Baptist University

Author of The Spirit and the Gift: A Postsecular Reading of Ralph Waldo Emerson and William James (monograph in progress)


Dr. Ayana Jamieson

Octavia E. Butler Legacy Network, founder

Author of “Black Blessings: Toni Cade Bambara and Octavia Butler” (The Feminist Wire)