Call for Papers for 2021 Luce-Hartford Conference

The Duncan Black Macdonald Center
for the Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations
at Hartford Seminary

2021 Luce-Hartford Conference on Christian-Muslim Relations:
Christian-Muslim Relations in the Midst of the Pandemics:
Activities, Opportunities, and Challenges


In recent years American Muslim and Christian communities have faced challenges arising from the impact of debates and policies related to immigration, Islamophobia, racial injustice, “law and order,” and the public rise of white supremacy. Islamic centers and Christian congregations have had to contend with the realities of a deeply divided electorate that prompt ideological debates within and between communities. As COVID-19 has disrupted traditional patterns of worship and community life, it has also impacted, and perhaps spurred, opportunities for interfaith engagement that address the longstanding pandemic of racial injustice.

The 2021 Hartford Conference on Christian-Muslim relations will focus on the current state of Muslim and Christian relationships in the U.S. between congregations and masjids, Islamic Centers and social service agencies in the midst of the COVID-19 health care crisis and the longstanding pandemic of racial injustice. We are interested in the descriptions of models and analyses of projects on Muslim and Christian intercommunal relationships in specific urban, suburban, or rural contexts. Have the more recent public events and debates surrounding these pandemics contrived to curtail and put pressure on established relationships? Or, have the pandemics led to unique interfaith encounters and positive outcomes? Papers should examine the specific social-cultural-political contexts out of which Christian-Muslim intercommunal projects arose and developed, the impetus for relationships, and the challenges faced, including but not limited to economic, environmental, political, ethnic, racial, social, and theological realities. In particular, we are interested in how the last several years have impacted Muslim-Christian relationships in the United States and how Muslim and Christian communities have sought to address the public challenges of Islamophobia, racism, white nationalism, and public health concerns caused by COVID-19, and how communities have or might work together to overcome these public challenges.

An abstract of 500 words is due November 1, 2020. Papers of selected participants are due February 15, 2021. Selected authors and contributors will be invited to the June 7-9, 2021 Hartford Conference on Christian-Muslim Relations to present their papers. Selected papers will then be published in the 2021 summer edition of The Muslim World.

 Questions or inquiries, as well as abstracts, should be directed to Dr. David D. Grafton, Professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations, Hartford Seminary ( (Funding is available to provide grants for participation in the conference.)

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