College Theology SocietyServing Church and Academy Since 1954

The Arts, Media, Literature, and Religion

2023 Call for Papers

Victoria Basug Slabinski, University of Virginia (VA)

Callie Tabor, Sacred Heart University (CT)

The Arts, Media, Literature and Religion (AMLR) section of the College Theology Society cordially invites proposals in light of the 2023 convention theme—“Theology and Media(tion): Rendering the Absent Present.” This theme invites us to consider how works of art, literature, and indeed media address the dynamic relationship between presence and absence and the theological significance of this mediation. The section also warmly welcomes proposals that take more systematic, historical, theoretical, or practical approaches to religious aesthetics and mediation.


Non-specialists in the study of the arts, media, literature or religion and theology are encouraged to consider submitting to this section. Graduate students and newer members of the CTS have also found a warm reception in our section.


Suggested topics include but are not limited to:

  • How has art contributed to the erasure of groups marginalized or oppressed by the Church? Or conversely, how has art disrupted or challenged this erasure, or rendered the presence of the sacred in these groups?
  • As we continue to grapple with changes stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, how might art or media be used virtually or in-person to create a culture of presence in the theology/religion classroom or in church community/liturgy?
  • What kinds of theologies are being mediated through social media and popular culture? What vision of God or Christianity is expressed by these theologies?
  • How has art – particularly recent works of art, literature, or digital media that have responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, racial injustice, and/or the climate crisis – served to mediate practices of activism and resilience-building? How might these works of art be approached or reflected upon theologically? How might faith communities engage them?



Please e-mail your 200-300 word abstract to BOTH AND by December 15, 2022. In your proposal, please include the title of your project, your name, institutional affiliation, and any audio/visual needs. Feel welcome to contact Victoria Basug Slabinski and Callie Tabor at the above addresses with any questions or concerns.

      The College Theology Society is a registered, non-profit professional society and a Related Scholarly Organization of the American Academy of Religion.


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