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1st Global Conference: Sacred Journeys: Pilgrimage and Beyond (July 2014: Oxford, United Kingdom)
full name / name of organization:
Dr. Rob Fisher/ Inter-Disciplinary.Net
1st Global Conference: Sacred Journeys: Pilgrimage and Beyond
Wednesday 9th July – Friday 11th July 2014, Mansfield College, Oxford, United Kingdom
Call for Presentations
The latest research indicates that more than 130 million people embark on the traditional pilgrimages in Saudi Arabia, India, Japan, and so on, and numbers are increasing as a consequence of globalisation. In recent times, the transformation of the pilgrimage known as ‘The Way’, the Camino de Santiago de Compestela in northern Spain has been most remarkable. Historically, this was the third of Christendom’s major pilgrimages after Jerusalem and Rome. Today, the Camino attracts just as many atheists and agnostics as Catholics and Protestants. The Kumb Mela in India, held every 12 years, attracted over 50 million people in February 2013, including a large number of Indians from the Diaspora. For the first time in its history, a handful of untouchables were permitted entry into the Ganges for the ritual cleansing, a signal of change that is underway in that country.
Another example of the new wave of pilgrimage in the contemporary world is the Buddhist pilgrimage around the circumference of the Japanese island of Shikoku. Of the several hundred thousand people who undertake the 870km journey each year, only a few thousand walk; the vast majority travel in organised bus tours.
This Project on Sacred Journeys and Pilgrimage will explore all aspects of the practice, from its nationalistic aspects, as with Medjugorje in Bosnia, to economic and development aspects, the impact of the internet and globalisation, pilgrimage as protest (as with Gandhi’s salt march or the Dalit(Untouchable) leader Dr. Ambedkar’s pilgrimage to fresh water sources, and so on. The similarities and differences in the practice of sacred journeys and pilgrimage in Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, and other religions and spiritual traditions, all the way to secular sites such as Graceland will be considered.
As anthropologists, we are also interested in the concept of the internal pilgrimage and the journey of self-discovery. The experiential, practical, historical, and psychological aspects of the sacred journey are central to our exploration, and we encourage all those seeking to participate to consider their work in this larger frame.
This conference will call for proposals, presentations, papers, performances on these and other aspects of sacred journeys and pilgrimage:
The physical journey through time and space
The Steering Group particularly welcomes the submission of pre-formed panel proposals.
In order to support and encourage interdisciplinarity engagement, it is our intention to create the possibility of starting dialogues between the parallel events running during this conference. Delegates are welcome to attend up to two sessions in each of the concurrent conferences. We also propose to produce cross-over sessions between these groups – and we welcome proposals which deal with the relationship between Sacred Journeys and Forgiveness and Revenge
What to Send
a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in programme, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) body of proposal, f) up to 10 keywords.
Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer to all proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.
The conference is part of the Persons series of ongoing research and publications projects conferences, run within the Probing the Boundaries domain which aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore innovative and challenging routes of intellectual and academic exploration. All proposals accepted for and presented at the conference must be in English and will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected proposals may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume(s). All publications from the conference will require editors, to be chosen from interested delegates from the conference.
Inter-Disciplinary.Net believes it is a mark of personal courtesy and professional respect to your colleagues that all delegates should attend for the full duration of the meeting. If you are unable to make this commitment, please do not submit an abstract for presentation.
For further details of the conference, please visit:
Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.