2018 Gathering

Please join us for our annual meeting on Oct 18-20, 2018 at the Walker Center, just outside Boston, MA.

In addition to papers on participant's current research, we will be engaging the theme of “American Exceptionalism: Religion, Identity, and Power.”

This theme invites us to explore the legacy of U.S. American identity as a “chosen nation” through the lenses of religious studies, ethics, theology, and history. In the midst of contemporary, political debates about American identity and values, this theme provides the opportunity for scholarly reflection on the relationship between theology and politics, religion and nationalism, identity and exceptionalism, and their relevance to the UU tradition and contemporary thinking.

Call for Papers

Our 2018 Call for Papers is now open. Deadline for proposals is June 1, 2018.

For the conference, we are seeking both individual papers as well as group panels of interactive discussion or interrelated papers.

Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Any papers or projects that engage your particular interest broadly related to the Unitarian Universalist movement and tradition.
  • The historical legacy of U.S. American colonialism and Protestant Christian hegemony.
  • Theological constructions of American “chosenness” and its relationship to power.
  • The ethical issues of defining belonging in the nation.

To learn more or to submit a proposal online, visit "Call for Papers."


coming in late March/early April.

2018 Distinguished Scholar

Joining us as this year’s Distinguished Scholar will be Catherine Brekus, the Charles Warren Professor of the History of Religion in America at Harvard Divinity School. 

Her current research interests include the religious history of American exceptionalism and the relationship of Christianity, capitalism, and consumerism in the United States. At Collegium she will present two talks, “Chosen Nation: Christianity, Nationalism, and American Destiny” and “City on a Hill: From the Puritans to the Unitarians.”

She is the author of of many articles and books, including Strangers and Pilgrims: Female Preaching in America, 1740-1845, which explores the rise of female preaching during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, and Sarah Osborn’s World: The Rise of Evangelicalism in Early America, which argues that the evangelical movement emerged in dialogue with the Enlightenment.

Read more about Catherine Brekus here.