Religious “Others,” Schooling, and the Negotiation of Civic Identities

Call for Participation, Interdisciplinary Symposium
June 25-28, 2014
Hannover, Germany

Abstract
The symposium will explore the relationship between hegemonic discourses of citizenship, religio-cultural belonging, and the negotiation of civic identities among religio-cultural minority youths in educational settings. The question of how non-dominant youths negotiate their civic identities as citizens in light of their coexisting religio-cultural identities has been at the center of a heated debate in many modern societies. The ongoing public concern about the resurgence of the religious – and here especially the religious ‘other’ – in the public sphere has led to the emergence of a public debate over how to handle the ‘religious’ in the institutions, civic society, and public sphere of ‘postsecular’ society. The symposium will explore how societal master narratives about secularity, religion/ the religious ‘other,’ and citizenship are instantiated in the everyday practices of schools and classrooms, and how students from religious minority groups in turn come to navigate their identities as citizens.

These questions will be theorized and explored empirically in presentations and discussion workshops focused on 1) the macro-level of hegemonic formations of citizenship and belonging that characterizes classrooms across a variety of settings, with particular attention to the role of the religious ‘other’ in these formations, 2) the micro-level of everyday practices through which these formations are enacted in curricula and in the classroom, 3) the personal experience of moments of inclusion, exclusion, and silencing, and 4) the policy level of ongoing transformations and mutual openings that allow for the construction of a shared civic identity among youths as future citizens.
Researchers from a range of disciplines, including, but not limited to, education, anthropology, religious studies, philosophy, linguistics, sociology, and political science, are invited to participate.
Application deadline with short statement of interest: July 10, 2013

Call for Participation

Travel cost and lodging will be covered for all accepted participants. At this point we are solicitating informal statements of interest of academic researchers who would be interested in contributing to the symposium by giving paper presentations or leading workshops on particular topics. Please send your letter of interest together with a short CV, contact information, and a specification of your research interest in relation to the theme of symposium to: Dr. Julia Eksner by July 10, 2013.

A full proposal will be submitted to the Volkswagen Foundation If funded, doctoral and post-doctoral students will be invited to participate during fall 2013.

For further questions or in order to submit your statement of interest, please contact Dr. Julia Eksner

Symposium Organizers:
Julia Eksner, Ph.D.
Freie Universität Berlin
Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology/ Institute of Intercultural Education
Landoltweg 9-11
14195 Berlin
email: julia.eksner@fu-berlin.de

Zvi Bekerman, Ph.D.
School of Education, Melton Center
Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Mount Scopus
Jerusalem
Israel, 91905
email: zvi.bekerman@mail.huji.ac.il

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