The American Academy of Religion & the Society for Biblical Literature
Founded in 1909, the American Academy of Religion (AAR) is the world’s largest association of scholars who research or teach topics related to religion. The AAR also sponsors regional group meetings around the country in addition to an annual meeting for the entire academy. The Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) is the oldest and largest international scholarly membership organization in the field of biblical studies. Founded in 1880, the Society has grown to over 8,500 international members including teachers, students, religious leaders and individuals from all walks of life who share a mutual interest in the critical investigation of the Bible.
For many years the AAR and the SBL held their annual meetings jointly. In 2008 the two organizations began holding separate meetings but will once again meeting jointly in 2012.
The AAR and LGBT communities witnessed a milestone moment in the early 1980s when two new consultations were added to the AAR’s lineup of program units: The Gay Men’s Issues in Religion Consultation and the Lesbian-Feminist Issues in Religion Consultation. Both of these program units later became “groups,” which indicates an endorsement by the AAR of the ongoing significance of these particular areas of research. In 2005 yet another consultation was add: Queer Theory and LGBT Religious Studies. In 2006 the SBL added a LGBT/Queer Hermeneutics consultation to their regular program units.
Much of the scholarship in these LGBTQ-related program units represents pioneering, path-clearing work in LGBTQ religious studies, some of which is later published but much of it is not. Working in cooperation with the chairs, co-chairs, and participants of these program units, CLGS is pleased to start provide access to that research and scholarship here on this website. Be sure to sign up for the CLGS e-newsletter to receive the latest updates on this web-based resource.