Call for Papers: New Methods in Sociology of Religion
Annual Review of the Sociology of Religion
Issue number 3, 2012
New Methods in Sociology of Religion
Call for Papers
Research in the sociology of religion has hitherto been based on either qualitative or quantitative methods. This division is based on European philosophy at the end of the XIX century which distinguished between natural science and the humanities, exploration and interpretation, empirical-measurements and hermeneutics. The Methodenstreit of German historicism expressed this dualism, and it is repeated in the current ‘war of paradigms’ (eg. Guba and Lincoln).
Despite this, social research methods are increasingly interested in the possibilities of combined methods. This has also consequences for the sociology of religion, which tries on the one hand to describe and explain religious facts and on the other to comprehend and interpret religious expressions. The issue of methodological innovation is actualized by the challenge to present a comprehensive analysis of new religious forms in contemporary society. This interest for combining quantitative and qualitative approaches opens for a new kind of “methodological question”: whether such combinations are meaningful and which combinations are especially fruitful for the sociology of religion. Therefore, the third number of the Annual Review of the Sociology of Religion focuses on methodological innovation, new techniques or new combinations of established techniques, with special regard to new research themes in the sociology of religion. It also takes up a discussion of the epistemological foundation for such methodological innovations.
We solicit proposals for:
1. Epistemology and meta-theory, theoretical assumptions, plural theories.
2. Critical reviews of commonly used methods.
3. New methods.
Among the topics of special interest are:
- The role of the participant observer in field research
- New media for sociological research
- Visual and spatial methods
- Comparative research between history and sociology
- New approaches to quantitative analysis
- New approaches to case studies
- Methods for studying cyber religion and cyborg religion
Paper proposals (between 250 and 300 words) due: January 31, 2010
Completed manuscripts (between 8,000 and 10,000 words) due: July 30, 2011
Source: the e-mail list of the BSA Sociology of Religion Study Group