Tuesday, October 24, 2006

CFP: The Encyclopedia of Love in World Religions, ABC-CLIO 2007

CFP: The Encyclopedia of Love in World Religions, ABC-CLIO 2007

Yehudit Kornberg Greenberg, Ph.D.
Professor of Religion,
Director of Jewish Studies Program
Rollins College
Winter Park, Florida

Here is a list of available topics: Art (east and west); Courtship; Favoritism; Loneliness; Prostitution; Shame; Temptation. Word count for each is 1500-2000. Due date: Dec. 20, 2006.

Full Description of the Call:

The Encyclopedia of Love in World Religions, ABC-CLIO 2007
Yehudit Kornberg Greenberg, Editor and Author

The Encyclopedia of Love in World Religions is the first comprehensive reference book on the subject from antiquity to the contemporary period. In religious literature, there have been both scholarly and popular books that focus on sexuality, but there is no reference book that offers a comprehensive understanding of love encompassing its physical and spiritual dimensions and their interrelationships. The Encyclopedia will expose the reader to the extent and richness of religious teachings on love by identifying and discussing a wide range of topics pertaining to divine and human love in major world religions and cultures. The intended audience for the encyclopedia includes students and scholars in religion, philosophy, and anthropology.

The Encyclopedia of Love in World Religions is intended as a resource for the examination of philosophical, theological, and cultural questions pertaining to love. The complexity and indispensability of love renders it an essential subject for scholarship in the humanities and the social sciences. The topic of love is particularly suggestive of a perennial phenomenology—the existence of certain recurring characteristic patterns of human experience and philosophy. The notions that are included under the subject of love refer to shared predispositions and social behaviors found in all cultures, religions, and philosophies. These traditions present and treat love in distinct ways that both contribute
to the richness of the topic and at the same time perplex us, challenging us to expand beyond our particular intellectual boundaries. Love is depicted as an emotion, an action, a relationship, a moral teaching, and a religious ideal. It is understood as conditional and unconditional, personal or impersonal, temporary and eternal. Some languages make a distinction between different types of love and have multiple terms for it while others have a single term. The Encyclopedia will serve to illuminate independent cultural and religious origins of similar phenomena and ideas pertaining to love.

This 2 volume encyclopedia will have an introductory chapter that will provide an extensive framework for the multidisciplinary study of love in world religions. Following it, there will be approximately 350 entries of 1000 to 4000 words in length. These entries cover language- and religion-specific terms and works associated with love, and general notions and concepts for love in major world religions. Examples of entries include: Agape; Androgynous Myths; Bodhisattva; Celibacy; Charity; Commandments to love; Compassion; Ecstasy; Enemy; Festivals of Love; Forgiveness; Guru; Hasidism; Incest; Intermarriage; Jealousy; Lust; Modesty; Procreation; Sibling Rivalry; Song of Songs; Sufism; and Wedding Rituals. All entries in the Encyclopedia will have a bibliography and suggestions for further readings. The entries will be original scholarly essays written by renowned academic scholars in the field of religion.

With its wide array of topics related to the emotions, experiences, and relationships associated with love, the encyclopedia will address fundamental philosophical and theological questions. These questions include the following: Do we choose to love? Can one decide to love even when one is not inclined to do so? Can we be commanded to love? Is human love of God a distinct phenomenon or is it simply integral to experiences of prayer or social justice? What is the difference between love and desire? Can love be unselfish? Does love have to be a relationship of mutuality? If God loves us and loves justice, why do the innocent suffer? Is love gender dependent? Why do some religions insist upon abstinence and celibacy as an expression of divine love? What is the role of allegory in religious hermeneutics?
The introductory chapter of the Encyclopedia will include the following sections:
Rationale and objectives of the encyclopedia; Methodological background for the cross-cultural and multidisciplinary inquiry represented in this encyclopedia; Approaches to and perspectives on love including those of Greek philosophy, medieval and modern theology, comparative religion, literary criticism, gender studies, cultural anthropology, ethics, and postmodern theories; Concepts of love as emotion, relationship, action and religious ideal; Definitions of types of love: friendship, altruistic love, erotic love, spiritual love, cosmic love, and family love.
The second Chapter will include essays by contemporary religious leaders, including the

Dalai Lama and Pope BENEDICT XVI.

My advisory board includes: Margaret Miles (Graduate Theological Union), Daniel Boyarin (U.C. Berkeley), Barbara Holdrege (U.C. Santa Barbara), Francis Clooney (Harvard University), Francis Landy (University of Alberta), Zeev Harvey (Hebrew University), Elliot Ginsburg (University of Michigan), Moshe Idel (Hebrew University), and Elliot Wolfson (New York University).