African Association for the Study of Religions & Journal of Africana Religions
Pan-Atlantic Collaborative Research Partnerships
The primary purpose of the Pan-Atlantic Collaborative Research Partnerships is to match a scholar working on the African continent with a scholar working in the Americas, Europe, or Asia in order to jointly research and write an article for publication in the Journal of Africana Religions.
How It Works
A scholar working on the African continent partners with a scholar working on another continent. Scholarly methods, research plans, and writing arrangements are negotiated directly between the writers. These relationships take a variety of forms: a senior scholar mentors a junior scholar (with credit shared equally); a scholar in Africa may be primary researcher while a scholar in another continent may be the primary writer, or vice versa; scholars weave together two case studies to produce a comparative approach to a phenomenon or theme.
In order to express interest in participating, scholars post a “research partner wanted” advertisement—very much akin to a “help wanted” ad–on the program web forum, which is available on Google Group: “AfricanaReligions”:!forum/africanareligions.  This web forum is monitored and edited by both the AASR & JOAR.
Any scholar interested in responding to the ad replies directly to the scholar searching for a partner. The scholar who posted the ad then has the obligation to inform the journal at and removes the ad. The journal then generates a formal invitation for the partners to submit an article.
If possible, research pairs should consider visiting one another’s campuses and jointly attending an international conference.
The Journal of Africana Religions editors will check in once a month to ask about the team’s progress and if any help is needed. The Journal of Africana Religions editors will also be available to respond to queries and give feedback on article drafts.
The journal editors, in collaboration with AASR leaders, also attempt to identify and research pairs, but AASR members, Journal of Africana Religions board members, and other scholars are also encouraged to reach out directly to one another.
The partners are recognized for their work on social media and in the AASR Bulletin.
Research Collaboration
Almost all successful research collaborations, like all relationships, rely on good communication. Pan-Atlantic Research Pairs are expected to set the ground rules of their partnership and to agree to a research and writing plan before beginning work together. This should be done in writing, even if it is only in an email. Among the questions that should be answered: who is going to do what, and when will it be due? The research and writing plan should be a living agreement that is altered based on negotiation and in response to changing conditions.
Research pairs should be in frequent communication with one another via email, phone, Skype, etc. Silence is not golden when it comes to collaborative research. Research pairs should be prepared to discuss rather than ignore any disputes that emerge. The partners should also reach out to others for assistance, including journal editors and AASR officers.
Publishing with the Journal of Africana Religions
Before submitting researching and writing an article for submission to the journal, authors are encouraged to check out what kind of research the journal publishes. The journal is available through JSTOR to all ASSR members working in Africa ( and is widely available via libraries in Europe and North America.
Published semi-annually by The Penn State University Press, the journal offers critical analysis of Africana religions, including the religious traditions of African and African Diasporic peoples as well as religious traditions influenced by the diverse cultural heritage of Africa. The journal is non-confessional. It publishes research about religion, including analytical and descriptive analyses of theology and ethics. An interdisciplinary journal encompassing history, anthropology, Africana studies, gender studies, ethnic studies, religious studies, and other allied disciplines, the Journal of Africana Religions embraces a variety of humanistic and social scientific methodologies in understanding the social, political, and cultural meanings and functions of Africana religions. We invite authors to submit articles and review essays that examine African traditional religions, Islam, Christianity, new religious movements, and other African and African Diasporic religious expressions and experiences.
The chronological scope of the journal is comprehensive and invites research into the history of Africana religions from ancient to contemporary periods. The journal’s geographical purview is global and comprises Africa, the Americas, Asia, the Atlantic islands (such as Cape Verde and São Tomé), the Caribbean, and Europe. The journal is particularly concerned with publishing research on the historical connections and ruptures involved in the spread of Africana religions from within and beyond Africa. Emphasizing the historical movement or spread of Africana religions and the dynamic transformations they have undergone underscores the nuanced, complex history of these religions and transcends the essentializing gestures that have hindered previous generations of scholarship. For this reason, we encourage authors to examine multiple dimensions of Africana religions, including the relationship between religion and empire, slavery, racism, modern industrial capitalism, and globalization.
The journal encourages authors to submit articles and comprehensive review essays. All academic articles should be approximately 8,000-10,000 words long. Comprehensive review essays should be about 5,000 words in length. An abstract of approximately 150 words must accompany each manuscript. All articles and comprehensive review essays will be peer-reviewed.
Authors should submit manuscripts using the Journal’s dedicated manuscript website at: Please follow the “Instructions for Authors” link on the website.
All manuscripts must follow the current edition of the Chicago Manual of Style and should use endnotes. Materials submitted to Journal of Africana Religions (JOAR)must not have been previously published nor submitted for publication elsewhere while under review by JOAR editors. All manuscripts accepted are subject to editorial modification.

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