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Publication: Spirituality of Balkan Women (Volume, DL: 1 October 2012)‏



Volume of essays: Spirituality of Balkan Women

Editors: Nadja Furlan Štante (University of Primorska), Marjana Harcet (University of Ljubljana)

Paper Submission Deadline: 1st October 2012



For a forthcoming issue of the volume on essays on Spirituality of Balkan Women we invite contributions, either theoretically, empirically or practically oriented, and from various disciplinary perspectives that address the complex and dynamic question of the women's spirituality or the spirituality and its practice of women in Balkan (in context of increased cultural diversity that characterize contemporary societies).



Brief background issue:

The widespread perception that women are inferior to men, characteristic of so many religious teachings, has meant for a long time that women were excluded from the realms of spiritual authority and from the spiritual hierarchies of established religious institutions. Spirituality is often discussed in such general terms that no attention is given to either women or gender. If spiritual practice and understanding relate to all of life, then one of the most significant markers of human life is gender, and the difference it makes to spirituality. But gender perspective remains often hidden and unacknowledged in writings on spirituality. As in most other areas of life, men have usually defined what counts as spirituality, who can practice and teach it, who holds spiritual authority, and what the spiritual life is all about. Traditionally (in Western theology), spirituality has been the official prerogative of human males. It was primarily among men that spiritual disciplines were developed, taught, written down, and passed from one generation to the next. While women did have their own spiritual practices and devotions, they were usually of a more domestic, private and folk nature rather than being part of official religion. And this has had a deep impact on the spiritual lives of women. Our understanding of God, of ultimate reality in whatever form, and of ourselves as persons, is deeply interconnected. And we are always embodied selves patterned by different genders. Thus male and female approaches to spirituality have been profoundly influenced by their respective embodiments through which the life of the Spirit flows and express itself. Contemporary awareness of gender differences has given new expression to spiritual life and the flourishing of new spiritualities among women.

The new spirituality among women is sometimes described as »womanspirit« movement, or as spiritual and metaphysical feminism. This first emerged during the second phase of the women' s movement in the twentieth century. Contemporary women's spirituality is a tapestry of many strands. In its widest sense it means the spiritual quest and creativity of contemporary women, weather pursued in more traditionally religious or nontraditional, secular ways. Feminist spirituality is the reclaiming by women of the reality and power designated by »spirit«, but it is also a reclaiming of male power, of women's partaking in the Divine, and their right to participate in shaping the realm of spirit by fully participating in religion and culture. Women's spirituality combines the search for an embodied self, a balanced sense of subjectivity, with a new awareness of the power of the spirit. This finds expression in a new sense of community, and a new relationship to the whole environment of all living beings on earth.





We propose that contributions may wish to address the following questions but are by no means limited to them:

q women’s spirituality

q different forms of women’s spirituality that are present in contemporary Balkan religious sphere (institutional and non-institutional)



Papers are welcome of 6-8000 words (excluding footnotes and references) and shorter papers of 3-4000 words in which the authors present their views on one specific issue.



An abstract of the paper (100-150 words), in English should be submitted by 10. March 2012.

Papers should be submitted by 1st October 2012 and emailed in Word attachment to:

marjana.harcet@guest.arnes.si

We will be happy when you pass this information to other fellow researchers and give them the opportunity to publish in this volume of essays as well.

Looking forward to our fruitful cooperation.

To minimize the editing processes please follow instructions about references and citations in The Chicago Manual of Style available at http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html.

The list of references at the end of the paper has to be edited by alphabetical list of authors' surnames.