Spring 2017 GORABS Newsletter

Hello everyone,

Please enjoy the Spring 2017 edition of the GORABS Newsletter. The newsletter contains a message from our Chair, Dr. David Butler, information about upcoming GORABS events at next month’s Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers (AAG), a list of panels and sessions that may be of interest to GORABS members, and information about the David Sopher New Scholar Award, for which we are still soliciting submissions.

Finally, I would like to invite everyone to attend the 9th Annual GORABS Lecture. This year’s lecture will be entitled: “Religion/Geography Intersections: Removing the Silences” and is scheduled on Saturday, April 8 from 10:00-11:40 am, Room 111 Hynes, Plaza Level. This event will include a lecture from Dr. Stanley Brunn, panelists Darrel McDonald, Adrian Ivakhiv, and Vincent Artman, and discussion from Stanley Brunn, Justin Tse, and David Butler.

You can find the current newsletter here.



The AAG is almost upon us! I’m excited to be making the following announcements for the AAG:

Our Annual Lecture (Session 2684) this year will be given by Dr Katharyne Mitchell (University of Washington) on Sanctuary and Refugees in Europe. The *REVISION* is as follows: while the original program has this lecture in a Thursday slot, it has been CHANGED to Wednesday, 5:20 PM – 7 PM in Metropolitan B, JW Marriott Hotel, 2nd Floor.

We have also revised the time for our Business Meeting (which was originally also on Thursday) to immediately follow the Annual Lecture in the same room. All are welcome to stay; our meeting will last no longer than one hour.

On Thursday, there is a Joint Keynote Session held by the China Geography Specialty Group and GORABS that will be delivered by Dr Fenggang Yang (Purdue) on Mapping Chinese Spiritual Capital and Religious Markets. This will be held from 11:50 AM – 1:10 PM in Imperial B, Hilton Hotel, Ballroom Level.

Sopher Award 2016



The purpose of The David E. Sopher New Scholar Award is to promote intellectual enquiry from new scholars into geographies of religions and belief systems through the presentation of papers at the AAG meeting. Papers will be judged on potential contribution to the field of Geography of Religions and Belief Systems, organization, and written composition.

Both graduate students and untenured faculty, who are not currently serving on the GORABS board, can apply for the award.

The amount for the 2016 award is a travel grant of $250. The recipient will be presented with an official certificate at the AAG awards luncheon.

A check will be disbursed to the winner at the 2016 Geography of Religions and Belief Systems Annual Lecture at the AAG on Thursday, 3/31/2016, from 5:20 PM – 7:00 PM in Paris North, Marker Hotel, Lobby Level.

The paper and application form must be emailed to GORABS in rich text or Microsoft Word format by March 11, 2016. Please submit your papers to aaggorabs@gmail.com.

The paper must subsequently be presented at the national AAG meeting, though it does not have to be in a GORABS sponsored session.

A panel of previous GORABS chairs will judge the papers and determine a recipient.
The winner will be announced in time to attend the awards luncheon with a GORABS representative. GORABS reserves the right to not make an award in a given year.

Geography of Religion and Belief Systems @ AAG

On behalf of the Geography of Religion and Belief Systems (GORABS) Specialty Group at the American Association of Geographers (AAG), I welcome you to our new website. We are the specialty group at the AAG promoting an approach to the discipline of geography that takes seriously the ontological dimensions of religion, theology, belief systems, myths, fables, what some call ‘superstition,’ and all the rest of that stuff. We also investigate the ways in which processes of secularization have long been shaping forces in modern geographies.

At this website, you will find periodic updates on how our group is contributing to the growth of our field, especially our activities at the AAG. Stay tuned on this website for updates about our work at the AAG, including information about awards that we will be offering, papers that we will be presenting, and lectures that we will be hosting. As we approach the San Francisco meeting of the AAG in 2016, we will have many updates rolling out here. Follow us also on Facebook.

See you in San Francisco!
Justin K.H. Tse, PhD (UBC), (GORABS chair, 2013-16)