College Theology SocietyServing Church and Academy Since 1954


2022 Call for Papers

Ramon Luzarraga, Saint Martin's University (WA)

Jacob Kohlhaas, Loras College,

Kari-Shane Davis-Zimmerman, College of St. Benedict/St. John’s University (MN)

This year’s convention theme, “‘Why We Can’t Wait’: Racism and the Church,” offers opportunities for a wide range of explorations and applications of theological ethics and moral theology.
The Ethics Section recognizes that one of the challenges in grappling with the issue of race and racism is the underlying philosophical assumptions one brings to the issue. On the one hand, Aristotelians and Thomists would argue that race is an accidental feature of the human person. It does not make a decisive contribution to the identity of any one human being compared to something essential like sexual identity. The hybridization of human persons, which defy and redefine racial categories is an example of their argument. Therefore, an approach where one’s race is ignored, or seen as a trivial feature of a person’s identity is advocated. On the other hand, Christianity has rejected both Gnosticism and Docetism, choosing instead to affirm the significance of physical embodiment. To ignore an important feature of how a particular human being is embodied is to devalue an essential aspect of the human self. At the same time, recent science has further complexified the issue by revealing the weakness of links between socially operative racial categories and actual genetic heritage.
Therefore, the Ethics Section calls for paper proposals that thoughtfully and creatively engage the philosophical and theological underpinnings of how Christians approach race. How decisive is race in defining the identity of a person? How should this affect how that person and society interact, especially in light of the fact that there exist groups like Hispanics, who run the entire color spectrum from black to white, and herald the growing hybrid nature of human beings who more and more defy easy racial categorization and disrupt those categories.
High-quality proposals in any other area of theological ethics and moral theology will be considered, but proposals which centrally engage the convention theme will receive primary consideration. At the same time, the Ethics section invites proposals that attend to the interdisciplinary, ecumenical, or interreligious context of a contemporary ethical inquiry into this theme, particularly in collaboration with scholars of the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion.

Submission Information Details:

  • Please submit a proposal of 300 words and a brief list of the 3-5 most centrally significant sources for this paper in the body of an e-mail message directed to both conveners.
  • Please also include your institutional affiliation (if any), contact information, and current status (Assistant, Associate, PhD. Candidate) along with your proposal.

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