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Conference Topics and Process for Submitting Proposals

International Understanding Conference 2010

Rochester's faith and community leaders share their beliefs about the interfaith movement and the significance of the 2010 IUC, a forerunner of the Sacred Texts and Human Contexts conference.

Conference Topics and Process for Submitting Proposals

Conference Topics and Process for Submitting Proposals

 The Conference is open for 40 presenters who are selected based on the order of which the Committee accepts their  abstracts.

Procedures for submitting proposals

We look forward to your proposals for papers and/or panel presentations. These proposals (attachments in word doc format is preferred) should be sent to  with the subject line, "Proposal Submission."  The deadline for all proposals is January 15, 2014. Selected papers will be published. Please Note:

  • All Proposals will be reviewed together soon after its due date of January 15, 2014.  You will be informed of acceptance by January 31, 2014. The proposal should be no more than 550 words. In addition you should send a 225-word resume that presents your expertise in the area of your presentation, as well as your address, telephone number, and email address.
  • No proposals will be accepted after January 15, 2014.
  • Your entire presentation will be due April11, 2014.
  • Acceptance of your presentation for publication will be sent late September, 2014.

Some proposed Conference Topics:

In addition to our questions on the introductory main page, some of the questions that seem to us to be particularly important are listed below:

•         Now that social sciences study religion as a phenomenon rather than as a ground for behavior, have scriptural commands become, like economic behavior, subjects for study?

•         Do faith traditions permit people to think and act outside the framework of their individual or social economic contexts?

•         Do the vocabularies of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam differ in ways that affect discussions of social and economic justice? (Do different social sciences also have such variations in vocabulary?)

•         What stories from sacred scriptures illuminate judgments about how to treat wealth and poverty, in particular, those involving the founding figures of the traditions?

•         Do judgments about usury have relevance for our credit-dependent societies?

•         May increase in wealth be seen as a worthy goal in these traditions?

•         What is the relation between economic principles such as ownership and commodity, on the one hand, to our responsibilities to the earth and all that is on it?

•         What answers do Judaism, Christianity, and Islam have for those who argue that they are more concerned about personal poverty than the systemic causes of economic inequity? Are the leaders of these faiths responsible for addressing institutional sins in the past as well as in the present?

•         How might claims that God's will determines one's status be addressed? Such claims underlie the Marxist-Leninist claim that religion, to use a historically popular shorthand, is "the opiate of the people" that justifies inequities and oppression.

•         What broader significance is there in the relationship between the choice of a life of poverty and spirituality?

•         How do the religious underpinnings of popular and "high" art comment upon questions of economic justice?

·         * Why should religious people be concerned about these topics? Are they not more secular than religious or spiritual?

*  Does the role of alms giving or charity reduce the empowerment of those who receive it?

These are merely suggestions, we look forward to your ideas addressing the question of wealth, poverty and economic justice.






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