# Transhumanism and religion call for papers


CALL FOR PAPERS—deadline 11:59 pm, March 8, 2011 (current membership in the AAR not required to submit a proposal)

The annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion will be November 18-21, 2011 in San Francisco. Here below is the call for papers for the "Transhumanism and Religion" consultation.

CALL FOR PAPERS: This Consultation welcomes papers on any aspect of transhumanism and religion and seeks perspectives from a variety of religious traditions. Papers may identify and critically evaluate any implicit religious beliefs that might underlie key transhumanist claims and assumptions. For example, are there operative notions of anthropology, soteriology, and eschatology at play in transhumanist quests? Papers might consider how transhumanism challenges religions to develop their own ideas of the human future; in particular, the prospect of human transformation, whether by technological or other means. Papers may provide critical and constructive assessments of an envisioned future that place greater confidence in nanotechnology, robotics, and information technology to achieve virtual immortality and create a superior posthuman species. We welcome feminist analyses and more overtly philosophical critiques of posthuman discourse.


If you have never been an AAR member and do not have an AAR member ID, then log in at [http://op3.aarweb.org]. You can create a temporary account that will allow you to submit a proposal. If you have technical difficulty submitting your proposal, you can contact the AAR office (404 727 3049). If you have questions about the call or the consultation, you can contact me ([[email protected]]).

For those not familiar with the AAR "Transhumanism and Religion" consultation, here is the mission:

MISSION OF THE CONSULTATION: "Transhumanism" or "human enhancement" refers to an intellectual and cultural movement that advocates the use of a variety of emerging technologies. The convergence of these technologies may make it possible to take control of human evolution, providing for the enhancement of human mental and physical abilities deemed desirable and the amelioration of aspects of the human condition regarded as undesirable. These enhancements include the radical extension of healthy human life. If these enhancements become widely available, it would arguably have a more radical impact than any other development in human history — one need only reflect briefly on the economic, political, and social implications of some of the extreme enhancement possibilities. The implications for religion and the religious dimensions of human enhancement technologies are enormous and are addressed in our Consultation. We are interested in encouraging and providing a forum for a broad array of input from scholars, including Asian and feminist. For more information, or to be placed on a very occasional mailing list, contact Calvin Mercer at [[email protected]].

Calvin Mercer, Ph.D.

Professor of Religion

Director, Multidisciplinary Studies Program

East Carolina University

Greenville, NC 27858 USA

252 328 4310 (off & vm)

252 328 6301 (fax)

[[email protected]]