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ICSA 2020 Annual Conference

Call for Papers

Montreal, Canada

July 2 — July 4, 2020

Submission Deadline: October 31, 2019

Conference Theme: Intervening in Cultic Situations — Questions and Issues

The International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) is conducting its 2020 Annual International Conference jointly with Info-Secte/Info-Cult of Montreal and the Association québécoise Plaidoyer-Victimes from July 2–4, 2020 (preconference workshops on Wednesday July 1, 2020).

Montreal’s International Jazz and Fireworks festivals will be happening during the conference.

The conference theme, “Intervening in Cultic Situations: Questions and Issues,” relates to the many requests for help and to the support services offered to those harmed by cultic situations (members or former members of high-control groups, and friends and families). Service providers include various organizations (community groups, foundations, judiciary, police agencies, youth-protection services, professionals from different disciplines, etc.). ICSA welcomes proposals related to this theme.

Paper presentations, workshops, and panels will provide an opportunity to discuss the different forms of assistance offered, how these forms of assistance came about, and also to reflect on new interventions. The conference will also provide a unique opportunity to examine legal guidelines (such as the various Charters of Rights and Freedoms, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Criminal Code, etc.) and how these guidelines might frame responses to different requests for help. Finally, the conference will enable professionals and researchers to reflect on the language used to describe the various phenomena: religion, cult, contemporary beliefs, cultic groups, new religious movements, minority religious groups, and so on in order to better understand how the use of certain terms can affect requests for help.

The conference committee is especially interested in proposals related to the conference theme. However, the committee will consider proposals on all aspects of the cult phenomenon, including victims’ perspectives, psychological and social manipulation, religious fanaticism, terrorism, law enforcement, treatment, prevention, and legal, social, and public-policy aspects of manipulation and victimization.

The Conference Committee will consider proposals in English or French.

This annual conference addresses the needs and interests of its audience, which generally consists of four principal constituencies: former group members, families, helping professionals, and researchers.

ICSA is firmly committed to freedom of thought, freedom of expression, and freedom of religion. Consistent with these values, ICSA’s policy with regard to conferences has been to encourage a wide range of viewpoints. Opinions expressed are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views of ICSA’s directors, staff, or supporters, or of collaborating organizations.

Individual presenters will have 30 minutes for a paper, including a question-and-answer period. Panel organizers will have 90 minutes for the panel, including a question-and-answer period. It is recommended that no more than three people speak on a panel.

To submit a proposal for a paper or panel, complete and submit the Call for Papers form.

Submission Deadline: October 31, 2019.