Past Seminar 1: THE MEDIATIZATION OF RELIGION IN A CHANGING RELIGIOUS LANDSCAPE
Time and place:3-5 of June, 2009. Doctoral students and supervisors are invited to a pre-meeting on the 3 of June.
Content: tudies in media, religion and culture in a Nordic as well as international context has primarily started out from concepts and models of religion modelled on the beliefs and practices of Western Christian Churches and denominations. Yet research during the latest decades show that this prototypical model is deteriorating both within and outside of these forms, and that new expressions of religion are developing following the cultural and ethnic plurality and individualism of late modern Nordic societies. A critical discussion of previous understandings of concepts of religion, sacred, secular/profane, ritual etc in the light of new approaches to religion is needed in order to develop further a theory on the mediatization of religion and culture.
• Professor Diane Winston, University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication
Transformative Dynamics between Religion and Media: Gendered Representations in two Case Studies
Past Seminar 2: MEDIA, ISLAM AND MODERNITY: Challenges to the Nordic Context.
Time and place:The seminar will take place 26-28 October at Sigtunastiftelsen www.sigtunastiftelsen.se close to Arlanda airport, Stockholm. The seminar will start on Monday with dinner at 19:00, and close on Wednesday at 14:00.
Content: The seminar refers to discussions about the ”resurgence of religion” in academia as well as in media during recent years, focusing on Islam. A central theme in this discussion concerns the understanding of religion and modernity as contradictory phenomena. What images of Islam are presented in the media, and how are these images related to values ascribed as significant to modern society? Is Islam as a new religious presence in the Nordic countries treated as a resource for or as a challenge to modern, secular and democratic societies? Are the media focusing disproportionately on certain religious groups, beliefs and practices?
• Jakob Skovgaard-Petersen will give a keynote on "Framing Islam and the Middle East in Nordic Media." He is Associate Professor, with the Islamic Public Sphere Programme www.islamicpublicsphere.hum.ku.dk at the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen. He was director of the Danish-Egyptian dialogue institute in Cairo from 2005 to 2008.
• Annelies Moors will talk on "Islamic fashion on the Internet". Her keynote relates to the NORFACE project "Islam as a Social Force in Europe: Islamic Fashion and the Politics of Presence" . Annelies Moors is Professor at the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at the University of Amsterdam. She also directs a research programme on Muslim Cultural Politics.
• Liesbet van Zoonen will discuss "Fitna the video battle" following a screening of the controversial anti-Islam film. van Zoonen is Professor of media studies at Loughborough University, UK, and attached to the Erasmus University in Rotterdam as well. She directs a research project on Fitna and the video reactions on the Internet that it provoked
Past seminar 3: Seminar 3: MEDIATIZATION, RELIGION AND TRANSFORMATIONS OF THE NORDIC PUBLIC SPHERE
Time and place: 26-28 of May, 2010, at Sigtunastiftelsen www.sigtunastiftelsen.se close to Arlanda airport, Stockholm. Doctoral students and supervisors are invited to a pre-meeting on the 26 of May.
Theme: The Nordic societies have to a large extent been shaped by cultural homogeneity and a strong tradition of public service media. During the latest decades this situation have been challenged by processes such as globalization, the formation of a European Union, and increasing cultural and religious pluralism. The theme of this seminar is to discuss how these developments impact understandings of a public sphere in the Nordic countries, with a particular focus on two central themes in the network:
transformations of primarily the public presence of religion in modern society, and processes of mediatization, through which the media increasingly provides the conduits, language and arenas for individual and collective expressions of religion.
Keynote lectures:Risto Kunelius, professor at University of Tampere, and Linda Woodhead, professor at Lancaster University, followed by responses from Hans Fredrik Dahl, professor emeritus University of Oslo, and Birgit Meyer, professor at VU University of Amsterdam.
Past seminar 4:Seminar 4: New Media, New Religion? Perspectives on mediatization and religious change
Theme: New digital and social media extend the possibilities of the individual user to shape and spread information bypassing traditional producers and gatekeepers, and to interact directly with other users as well as producers. What does this mean for the mediation of religion?
This seminar takes the challenge of new media as the starting point to discuss how transitions from one mode of mediation to another reconfigure particular practices of religious mediation (cf. Meyer & Moors 2006, p. 7). Does new media technology require new concepts and theories, or could they be seen as another aspect of mediatization? Does new media create new forms of religion, or do the forms of religion expressed through them rather reflect ongoing transformations in religious culture and institutions in society? What patterns of continuity, convergence and change of religion can be seen in the contemporary media landscape? Against this background the seminar welcomes abstracts dealing with theoretical aspects of new media and understandings of the interplay between media and religion, as well as empirical case studies. There will also be a paper session open for work in progress from members of the network.
Peter Horsfield, RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, who will speak about: "New media - new religion? Perspectives and questions from the history of Christianity”, and Nabil Echchaibi, University of Colorado at Boulder, US, who will speak about: “Formations of the Modern Muslim: New Media, Islam and Alternative Modernity”.
Peter Horsfield is Associate Professor of Communication at RMIT University in Melbourne, where he was until recently Deputy Head for Learning and Teaching at the School of Applied Communicatiuon. He conducted some of the early research on televangelism and religious broadcasting, and was a leader in Australia in research and advocacy work in the area of violence and sexual abuse in Australian churches. His more recent work has been in exploring historical dimensions of the interaction of media and Christianity.
Nabil Echchaibi is an assistant professor at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Colorado. His research interests include the impact of Muslim satellite television and blogging on religious authority, Muslim self-agency and the construction of the modern Muslim identity. Echchaibi earned his BA from Mohammed V University in Rabat and his MA and PhD from Indiana University-Bloomington. He is currently the associate director of the Center of Media, Religion, and Culture at the University of Colorado-Boulder.
We have also invited Anne Jerslev, professor in film and media studies, University of Copenhagen, and David Herbert, professor in sociology of religion at Agder University, Norway, to give their responses concerning the significance of the network for media studies and sociology of religion. There will also be sessions to evaluate the work of the network during the five past years, and discuss the possible futures of this research area and community in the Nordic context.