Posts Tagged ‘Freemasonry’
Correspondences. An online Journal for the Academic Study of Western Esotericism.
Call for papers. Deadline: feb. 28, 2013.
Correspondences seeks to create a public academic forum devoted to discussion and exposition of issues and currents in the field commonly known as ‘Western Esotericism.’ The editors acknowledge that the use of “Western esotericism” as an umbrella term for a widely variant field of alternate scientific and religious ideas is problematic. Thus, articles related to esoteric currents from other global cultural centers may be accepted if a connection to “alternative” currents in “western culture” is implicitly established.
The following list of areas of study is provided for clarification: Alchemy, Anthroposophy, Astrology, Eco-spirituality, Esoteric art, literature, and music, Freemasonry, Geomancy, Gnosticism, Hermeticism, Illuminism, Initiatory secret societies, Kabbalah, Magic, Mesmerism, Mysticism, Naturphilosophie, Neo-paganism, New Age, Occultism, Occulture, Paracelsianism, Rosicrucianism, Satanism, Spiritualism, Theosophy, Traditionalism, Ufology, Witchcraft.
Correspondences encourages submissions from a variety of methodological and disciplinary approaches, such as: History of Religions; Sociology; Art History; Philosophy; History of Science; Literature; ; and Cultural Studies, just to name a few.
Jimmy Elwing, rMA student, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Aren Roukema, rMA student, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Egil Asprem, MA, Researcher, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Dr. Henrik Bogdan, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
Dr. Juan Pablo Bubello, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Dr. Dylan Burns, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
Dr. Peter Forshaw, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Christian Giudice, PhD student, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
Dr. Amy Hale, St. Petersburg College, United States.
Prof. Boaz Huss, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel.
Prof. Birgit Menzel, Universität Mainz, Germany.
More Information, please contact us at
This two-day graduate conference will investigate the intersections between visual culture and the occult tradition, ranging from the material culture of ‘primitive’ animism, through medieval and Renaissance depictions of witchcraft and demonology, to the contemporary fascination with the supernatural in popular culture.
The conference aims to provide a stimulating arena for the presentation of innovative research in this field as well as to offer a vibrant and thought-provoking forum for scholarly discussion and exchange. We welcome papers from current and recent graduate students from all disciplines, provided their research engages with material, visual or symbolic aspects of magic and occultism.
Acceptable topics include, but are by no means limited to, the following areas:
* The sacred and the profane;
* The material culture of magic, ritual and sacrifice;
* Objects of totemic, apotropaeic or fetishistic character;
* Aspects of mysticism in Jewish, Christian and Islamic art and architecture;
* Satanism, witchcraft and demonology; * Sacred geometry, numerology and cosmology;
* The arcane sciences (including astrology, alchemy and the tarot game);
* Art-theoretical discussions of the spiritual, the sublime, the marvellous, the numinous and the uncanny;
* Artistic investigations of myth, fantasy and utopia;
* Visual aspects of occult movements such as Rosicrucianism, Freemasonry, Theosophy, Mesmerism, Spiritism and New Age Spirituality;
* The supernatural and the spiritual in modern and contemporary art; * Occultism and magic in contemporary popular culture.
N.B.: Presentations should not exceed a maximum of 20 minutes and will be followed by a 10-minute Q&A session. The sessions will be chaired by senior scholars within the University of Cambridge’s History of Art Department. We also hope to publish selected conference papers in a book of proceedings.
Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be sent to:
alongside a CV of 1-2 pages.
Deadline for submission is the 30th of September 2012.
All abstracts will be peer-reviewed and successful applicants will be notified about acceptance of their papers before the 15th of October 2012.
Early applications are strongly encouraged.
The Conference Committee
Josefine Baark, PhD Candidate, Homerton College Gabriel Byng, PhD Candidate, Clare College Imma Ramos, PhD Candidate, Pembroke College Daniel Zamani, PhD Candidate, Trinity College.
Day 1: Monday, 3 December 2012
09.30 – 10.00 Registration at
History of Art Department’s Graduate Centre on 4A Trumpington Street
10.00 – 10.05 Welcome address (Daniel Zamani & Dr Alexander Marr)
10.05 – 11.00 Keynote Lecture
Dr Urszula Szulakowska (University of Leeds)
The Sexualisation of the Virgin Mary: Hieratic Religious Art in an Alchemical Context
11.00 – 11.30 Coffee Break
11.30 – 1.00 Panel 1: The Christian Middle Ages Convenor: Dr Anna Gannon
Emily Goetsch (University of Edinburgh)
“Demonising the Other”: Spanish Apocalyptic Images of Evil as a Way of Promoting Christianity in Tenth-Century Beatus Manuscripts
Orsolya Mednyanzky (Tufts University, Medford)
Protecting the Sacred Script: A Cross in Glory in a Late Medieval Armenian Gospel Book
Monika Winiarczyk (University of Glasgow)
‘Homo Signorum’: Looking to God or Looking to the Stars? The Role of Astrology in Medieval Christianity
1.00 – 2.00 Lunch Break
2.00 – 3.30 Panel 2: Islam and Hinduism Convenor: Rachel Parikh
Anja R. Dreiser (University of Bamberg)
Magic Mirrors from the Islamic World
Alexandra Plesa (Leiden University)
Pots That Bless: Pious Inscriptions on Samanid Pottery in Dutch Collections
Shandra E. Lamaute (University of Edinburgh)
A Printed Islamic Amulet
Imma Ramos (University of Cambridge)
Impurity, Auspiciousness and Power: The Tantric Transformations of Lajja Gauri at Kamakhya
3.30 – 4.00 Coffee Break
4.00 – 5.00 Panel 3: Early Modern Europe I Convenor: Prof. Jean Michel Massing
Liliana Leopardi (Hobert and William Smith Colleges, NY)
Renaissance Magic Precious and Semi-Precious Stones: the Fetish as a
path to Pyschological Integrity
Nikola Piperkov (Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne)
Et procul in tenuem ex oculis euanuit auram: Natural Magic and Divine Word in Giambologna’s Statue of Mercury
Day 2: Tuesday, 4 December 2012
10.00 – 11.00 Panel 4: Early Modern Europe II Convenor: Dr Alexander Marr
Alexandra Marraccini (University of Chicago)
Open Secrets: Alchemical-Hermetic Iconography in the Ripley Scrolls
Marthe Kretzschmar (Technische Universitaet Hamburg)
Waxwork. Aby Warburg’s “Bildzauber” between materiality and resemblance
11.00 – 11.30 Coffee Break
11.30 – 1.00 Panel 5: Great Britain Convenor: Josefine Baark
Stephanie Churms (Aberystwyth University)
“Drawn by the Magician’s Wand”: The Occult Culture of Revolutionary Caricature
Lauren Greer (University of Saint-Thomas, MN)
Glamour: A Dissection of John Anster Fitzgerald’s Fairyland
Heather Carroll (University of Edinburgh)
‘Art not without ambition’: Lady Melbourne, the Duchess of Devonshire and Mrs. Damer as The Three Witches from Macbeth
1.00 – 2.00 Lunch Break
2.00 – 3.30 Panel 6: Surrealism Convenor: Dr Karolina Watras
Daniel Zamani (University of Cambridge)
Alchemy & Empowerment in Victor Brauner’s Appropriation of the Tarot Magician
Kristina Rapacki (Courtauld Institute, London)
Deicide, Regicide, Suicide: Bataille, Acephale and the Sovereign
Victoria Camblin (University of Cambridge)
Ritual and the Wagnerism of Acéphale (1936-1939)
3.30 – 4.00 Coffee Break
4.00 – 5.30 Panel 7: The 20 th Century Convenor: Elizabeth Upper
Adele Gardener (University of Bristol)
Art, Invocation and Alchemy: The Tarot Paintings of Lady Frieda Harris
Lisa Hanstein (Art-Historical Institute, Florence)
Unseen Spirits? Occult Aspects of Italian Futurist Art & Theory
Judith Noble (Arts University College, Bournemouth)
Ritual and Invocation: Occultism in the Films of Maya Deren and Kenneth Anger
5.30 – 5.35 Closing Remarks (Gabriel Byng)
5.35 – 7.00 Wine reception
Close of conference
JOURNAL OF THE WESTERN MYSTERY TRADITION
July 14-15, Milwaukee, WI
Call for Abstracts:
Since 2001, the Journal of the Western Mystery Tradition (JWMT) has worked to publish diverse perspectives on the occultisms, magical practices, mysticisms and esotericisms commonly known as the “Western Mystery Tradition.” The JWMT is expanding the work of the web journal through its first conference.
The JWMT conference is a two-day event open to scholars, students, practitioners, and the public. The keynote speaker is the Journal’s founder and publisher, Dr. Jeffrey S. Kupperman.
The study of western esoteric practices has risen greatly over the last decade, focusing on Antiquity, the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Modern magical practices and beliefs, outside of the realm of modern Paganisms and the New Age, have received little attention. Further, practitioners have had little opportunity to present their work, either as papers or in the form of ritual practice, outside of the internet or small groups. The focus of this conference is the movement of contemporary western esotericisms, loosely construed as the “western mysteries,” and their transition from the 20th to the 21st century. The Journal of the Western Mystery Tradition Conference 2012 is seeking abstracts for presentations, panels and practices centered on this broad subject.
Topics may include, but are not limited to:
Esoteric traditions such as Freemasonry, Rosicrucianism, Martinism and chivalric organizations,
Ritual magical practices from organizations such as the Golden Dawn and the Aurum Solis and modern initiatory Paganisms,
Esotericisms from earlier periods, such as alchemy, Gnosticism and Neoplatonism, the magical work of John Dee or the medieval grimoire traditions, and their re-emergence and relevancy to modern praxes,
Theoretical, paedogogical, and methodological approaches to the study of the western mysteries,
The relation of the esotericisms to orthodox and mainstream practices and society at large.
We welcome presentations, panels and practices focusing on methodological and theoretical issues in relation to the contemporary study and practice of the various western esoteric currents. The conference encourages an interdisciplinary approach and welcomes perspectives from the disciplines of religious studies, theology, anthropology, sociology, psychology, philosophy, history, political science, as well as active practitioners. Papers should last 20 minutes, with time for questions and answers. Panels and practices will be scheduled for up to an hour, with time for questions and answers afterwards as necessary.
Please submit abstracts (approx. 200 words), proposals for a themed panel (with three presenters, moderator as necessary, and short description) or proposals for a ritual practice and discussion to firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline for submissions is April 15, 2012.
No attachments please; copy and paste your abstract or proposal in plain text into the body of the e-mail. Submissions are not limited to academics or professional scholars. Include a brief (no more than one page) CV listing any qualifications, academic or otherwise, relevant to your proposal.
The conference will be held at the Best Western Plus Milwaukee Airport Hotel and Conference Center.
More information on the conference, registration, fees, accommodation, etc. is available at http://www.jwmt.org/jwmt12.
Place: University of Tampere, Finland
Dates: 7–8 September 2012.
Conference language: English.
This two-day conference is an international and academic event organized by the University of Tampere School of Social Sciences and Humanities in association with The Research Lodge Minerva No.27 of the Grand Lodge of F. & A. M. of Finland.
Edges of Freemasonry – Western Esotericism and the Enlightenment aims to investigate exceptional but prominent new currents in human sciences. The conference focuses on modern Freemasonry as a cultural and historically constituted phenomenon but also seeks to create a dialogue with wider contexts like the Enlightenment and especially the history of Western esotericism, which has increasingly attracted the attention of academic research. On this basis the conference organizers are hoping to establish a multi-disclipinary and discursive environment to study western cultural and intellectual life from standpoints hitherto somewhat neglected by scholarship.
The conference is open to scholars, researchers and post-graduate students from various disciplines as well as members of masonic lodges and the general public. The conference will take place at the
The call for papers as well as registration for the conference will open on 30th June 2011.
The keynote speakers of the symposium are Professor Ronald Hutton (University of Bristol, U.K.), Dr. Róbert Péter (University of Szeged, Hungary), Dr. Henrik Bogdan (University of Gothenburg, Sweden) and Mr. Antti Talvitie, Architect MSc. (Seinäjoki, Finland).
Freemasonry is among the most widespread spiritual communities and has had a significant role in diverse ideological currents often named Western esotericism. Freemasonry, which is at least 300 years old, is firmly rooted in the tradition of the Enlightenment. Western esotericism and freemasonry have increasingly attracted attention from academic research. As a unique yet also controversial phenomenon freemasonry provides a dynamic standpoint for the study of western cultural and intellectual life which from this point of view has been much neglected.
The key themes are:
1 The historical constitution of freemasonry
2 The connections between Western esotericism and the development of modern science
3 Symbols as cultural artefacts and transmission objects between the personal and the transcendence
4 Extending the rational: rites, intuition and religious experience in western subjectivity
The conference board welcomes all scholarly presentations, also from postgraduates, related to the themes or concepts of the Enlightenment, freemasonry, esotericism or the occult.
The organizers hope that proposals for the general sessions will be sent not later than November 31, 2011. Speakers are asked to supply their contact information, the title of the presentation and a short abstract (400—600 words). Proposals for other sessions can also be sent later.
The abstract should preferably be sent via email to the conference secretary
Mr. Antti Harmainen (email@example.com)
and to conference secretary
Ms. Katariina Lehto (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For further details of the conference, please see www.edgesoffreemasonry.net
AUGUST 27-29, 2012
Wouter J. Hanegraaff,
Center for History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents, University of Amsterdam
Christopher Partridge, Religious Studies, Lancaster University
Kocku von Stuckrad, Study of Religion, Groningen University
Deadline for Abstracts: March 30, 2012
Submit your abstract (approx. 200 words) along with a brief academic CV (approx 1 page) to: ContEso2012@gmail.com
The academic study of Western esotericism has blossomed in recent years; University departments and MA programs have been established, book series and journals launched, academic societies founded, and several international conferences and panels are organized every year. There is, however, still a major gap in scholarship on esotericism: very little research exists on contemporary phenomena. While some present-day phenomena related to esotericism, such as ‘New Age spiritualities’ and (neo)paganism, have been the focus of scholars in other fields, scholars working in the field of esotericism have largely neglected such developments. With a focus on early modern phenomena, scholarship in the field of Western esotericism has been predominantly historiographical in its approach, with a common reluctance to incorporate social scientific approaches. In recent years, however, serious attempts have been made to develop sociological approaches to the study of the esoteric/occult which are both compatible with historical approaches and forgo the biased presumptions of yesteryear. A fundamental challenge for the study of contemporary esoteric phenomena is that it is not sufficient to simply transpose theories, definitions and methodologies developed for the study of e.g. Renaissance magic to later manifestations of the esoteric. Studying contemporary phenomena poses intriguing possibilities, such as the opportunity to study esotericism in lived contexts, which unavoidably also introduce new problems. In general, several theoretical and methodological concerns need to be addressed if a proper study of contemporary esotericism is to succeed.
The primary aim of this conference is to place contemporary phenomena on the agenda of the study of esotericism. Thus we welcome papers dealing with contemporary and recent developments in “classic” esoteric currents – e.g. within Theosophy, Anthroposophy, Freemasonry, Rosicrucianism, and ritual magical currents – as well as esoteric developments of particular relevance today – e.g. Chaos Magick, Satanism, and (neo)paganism. We also strongly encourage papers dealing with theoretical and methodological issues that are particularly pertinent to the study of contemporary esotericism, as well as papers dealing with the societal, cultural, political, religious etc. contexts of esotericism today. This can include discussions on the role played by the esoteric in modern politics (e.g. the new right), grassroots activism (e.g. deep ecology and the animal rights movement), science (e.g. parapsychology, neurotheology, “New Age physics”), healthcare (e.g. alternative medicine), popular culture (both entertainment media and in broader contexts such as kitsch, consumer, and fan culture), and modern interactive communications media (e.g. mediatization and the effects of changing modes of mediation), as well as the simultaneous influence of these and other fields on esoteric notions, beliefs, and practices. General theoretical discussion on the potential usefulness of sociological terms and concepts such as globalization, secularization, and the post-secular in the study of contemporary esotericism is also encouraged. The conference should function as an interdisciplinary meeting place where scholars from a multitude of disciplines and with different approaches and perspectives can come together to learn from each other.
The conference is arranged in conjunction with the 2012 EASR conference, also arranged in Stockholm, Sweden (at Södertörn University, August 23-26). Panels on esotericism, both historical and contemporary, are planned for the EASR as well, thus providing the opportunity to engage in extended discussion on these subjects, and of course lessening travel expenses.
More detailed information, including conference fee, will be made available at a later stage.
Egil Asprem, PhD Research Fellow, Center for History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents, University of Amsterdam
Kennet Granholm, Assistant Professor, History of Religions, Stockholm University
Forthcoming volume on Contemporary Esotericism
The conference will function as the launching party for Contemporary Esotericism, the first volume specifically dedicated to the study of esotericism in the present day. The volume is published by Equinox Publishing and includes eighteen articles by well-established scholars as well as innovative younger researchers in the field. For more information, see the publisher’s webpage.