Journal Special Issue: Religions in Ritual, Spectacle, and Drama in the Medieval & Early Modern World

deadline for submissions: 
March 1, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
contact email: 

The journal Religions is hosting a Special Issue entitled “Religions in Ritual, Spectacle, and Drama in the Medieval & Early Modern World,” co-edited by Drs. Kristin M.S. Bezio (University of Richmond) and Samantha Dressel (Chapman University).

 The issue have proposed a final deadline of fall 2023 for publication, and we are asking for abstract proposals by March 1, 2023. Assuming all proposed abstracts fit the theme, we are hoping for initial drafted chapters by 1 July 2023 to allow time for revisions and editing before entering the production process. Final chapters will be due to Religions for peer review, etc., by 15 October 2023.

 We are inviting essays that pertain, broadly speaking, to the ideas of spectacle, ritual, and drama as it relates to questions or practice of religion. We are particularly interested in essays that include global, non-white (or not only white), and non-Anglocentric (or not only Anglocentric) perspectives. 

Spectacle lies at the heart of both ritual and drama, and religion is often similarly to be found at the core of both. Whether a spectacle is tied to ritualized praxis, to celebration or mourning, or to the production of a dramatic performance, elements of religious culture are often foregrounded, particularly in the medieval and early modern world.

 This Special Issue aims to showcase essays that discuss the impact and depictions of religious belief and conflict in public ritual and drama throughout the medieval and early modern periods. Specifically, the issue seeks essays that cross multiple boundaries, whether religious, cultural, social, or geographical in terms of their depictions of public spectacle, whether religious, dramatic, or both. Essays in this volume should also consider the importance of their argument’s focus to larger questions of inclusion, equity, and diversity, either within the period or relative to more contemporary discussions, whether in the classroom or in the wider world. 

 In this Special Issue, original research articles and reviews are welcome. Research areas may include (but are not limited to) the following: religious studies, theology, literature and drama, history, art history, musicology, archaeology, or another relevant field. We ask for articles that focus on the middle ages through the early modern period (understood as flexible based on the region(s) under consideration) and specifically pertain to the focal topic of the special issue (religions in ritual, spectacle, and drama).

Please submit abstracts directly to Drs. Bezio & Dressel ( and before March 1, 2023. The editors will evaluate abstracts and respond promptly with an invitation to submit chapters within two weeks of the deadline.