MMLA Religion and Literature Permanent Section

deadline for submissions: 
May 31, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Midwest Modern Language Association
contact email: 

This year’s conference theme, “Cultures of Collectivity,” in some ways, seems tailor-made for the Religion and Literature permanent section. Religious communities, either local, national, or global, come to mind. However, we might also think of “collectivity” more broadly. Because the subject of Religion and Literature covers all genres, subgenres, regions, religions and folklore we welcome proposals that address works and writers who explore any aspect of “Cultures of Collectivity.”

Possible approaches to this topic might include examinations of how literature explores:

  • sacred stories and/or customs that bring people together into religious communities, groupings, subcultures, and/or affinity groups;
  • cultural divide through religious reform, reassessment, or schism;
  • diaspora;
  • pilgrimage;
  • religious and/or mythological competition;
  • social implications of strong and/or weak religious identification;
  • religious influence on secular communities.

However, as this year’s theme is as broad as this section’s mandate to study the intersections of religion, folklore and literature, those aspiring to be on the panel should feel empowered to offer proposals that interpret these concepts rather loosely.


Please send 250-word abstracts with title to Dr. Seth Johnson at, no later than May 31, 2020.