Call for Papers - Religion in the American West Seminar Workshop (June 2023)

Call for Papers

Religion in the American West

Proposal Deadline: November 15, 2022

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The history of religion in the North American West has been rendered unevenly. Perhaps that is surprising for an area once considered exceptionally “unchurched.” Topics such as Latter-day Saint (Mormon) history and Catholic missions are highly visible and have been deeply studied. Other topics have been largely invisible or lightly studied or simply ignored. Yet, religion runs deeply through the region’s history and the region has shaped religious history and religious people. As the varied region populated by a rich diversity of peoples continues to evolve, so does the influence of religion in the region. The time is ripe for scholars to consider the confluence of region and religion.

To facilitate this consideration, The Charles Redd Center for Western Studies at Brigham Young University will host a workshop seminar “Religion in the American West” (tentatively scheduled for June 2023). We solicit proposals from historians and religious studies scholars who will write article-length essays (approximately 6,000-8,000 words) and gather at the BYU campus to workshop them together. Selected essays will subsequently be edited and published as an anthology. The workshop will be led and anthology edited by historians Todd M. Kerstetter (Texas Christian University) and Fred E. Woods (Brigham Young University). This project defines the geographic scope of the West broadly to include states west of the Mississippi River (including Alaska and Hawai’i), western provinces in Canada, and adjacent borderlands. We welcome proposals addressing religion broadly conceived, including Native American religion and spirituality, New Religious Movements, and more. Preference will be given to projects falling between 1803 and the present, although pre-1803 projects may be considered. Authors are encouraged to link the past with the present.

The BYU Redd Center fully funds participants’ travel, food, and lodging to the seminar. This follows an ongoing tradition of workshop seminars that have hosted premier senior scholars and upcoming junior scholars. Recent volumes produced from these events include: 

Apply using this link (, providing the requested information, and uploading a 500-word abstract and CV by November 15, 2022. Contact Redd Center Assoc. Director Brenden W. Rensink at if you have questions. 


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