Review of Contemporary Esotericism

A blog review of Contemporary Esotericism

A blog review of Contemporary Esotericism

Watch out for the next generation of esotericism scholars! We’re already here; and, according to Wouter J. Hanegraaff, the volume on Contemporary Esotericism that appeared on Equinox earlier this year, edited by Kennet Granholm and myself, is the shape of things to come. We hope he’s right, of course.

The 20 chapters of that volume covered much ground, but, as Wouter comments:

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Contemporary Esotericism (Equinox / Acumen, 2013)

Contemporary Esotericism cover

Contemporary Esotericism, edited by Egil Asprem and Kennet Granholm (Equinox / Acumen, 2013).

The study of contemporary esoteric discourse has hitherto been a largely neglected part of the new academic field of Western esotericism. Contemporary Esotericism provides a broad overview and assessment of the complex world of Western esoteric thought today. Combining historiographical analysis with theories and methodologies from the social sciences, the volume explores new problems and offers new possibilities for the study of esoterica.

Contemporary Esotericism studies the period since the 1950s but focuses on the last two decades. The wide range of essays are divided into four thematic sections: the intricacies of esoteric appeals to tradition; the role of popular culture, modern communication technologies, and new media in contemporary esotericism; the impact and influence of esotericism on both religious and secular arenas; and the recent ‘de-marginalization’ of the esoteric in both scholarship and society.

The volume includes articles by established authorities in the field including Wouter J. Hanegraaff, Kocku von Stuckrad, and Christopher Partridge, as well as a number of younger and up-and-coming scholars.

Order this book from Acumen.

REVIEWS:
“This valuable collection will introduce readers to ongoing scholarship on previously understudied modes of esotericism, and fills a conspicuous gap in the literature.” – Olav Hammer, University of Southern Denmark

Published in: on December 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm  Comments (3)  

Cyberproceedings from the Contemporary Esotericism conference

The ContERN website is slowly becoming active. Today we have published the first papers of the cyberproceedings from the Contemporary Esotericism conference in Stockholm this August. The first four papers to appear include two on Freemasonry and initiatic societies (J. Scott Kenney and Aslak Rostad), one on methodological issues in the study of contemporary Satanism (Jesper Aa. Petersen), and one on occulture in Brazilian pop music (Francisco Santos Silva). All of them should offer a lot of food for thought, so I suggest you go check them out: Is fraternalism a form of “moral elitism”? How do Masons experience the influence of joining the craft on the direction of their  lives? How are we to draw boundaries between different types of “Satanism“? And what does Aleister Crowley have to do with Brazilian pop music of the 1970s? Read and find out.

Another review of the Contemporary Esotericism conference

There is another review up on the 1st International Conference on Contemporary Esotericism, written by Venetia Robertson and published by the Religious Studies Project (for earlier reviews, see this post). Venetia has found out about my secret identity as an agent of the cherubim (was it my flaming sword or my rosy cheeks that gave it away?), and for the rest has a lot of nice things to say about the conference that came out of this esthetic “marriage of heaven and hell”. I particularly think she’s spot on in referring to the  general atmosphere of the conference being  characterised by “tough love”.

Go read the whole thing. There’s also some revealing pictures from the Dragon Rouge temple, tucked away in an unassuming suburban apartment building in Stockholm.

Contemporary Esotericism round-up and other news

It’s been a long time away from blogging, but for good reason I assure you. While in the middle of moving house I have been finishing  my dissertation, a good 600+ pages that will be sent off to committee members on Friday. Now  more work awaits in  following up on a recent event in Stockholm: as announced many times on this blog, the 1st International Conference on Contemporary Esotericism was held at Stockholm University on August 27-29.

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Contemporary Esotericism conference drawing close – full programme ready

The 1st International Conference on Contemporary Esotericism is drawing close. Kennet and I have been working hard the past two weeks on putting together a program schedule, editing the book of abstracts and collating other  useful information. Those who are already registered for the conference will already have received the schedule by email. Now it is also available online at the conference website. Better yet, the complete book of abstracts can be found as a pdf here. I add a copy of the schedule below as well. If you want to find more about a particular paper, you can go to the book of abstract. And of course: If this looks tempting, you are still welcome to join the conference! Registration is open continuously online.

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Registered for Contemporary Esotericism yet?

There is still time, but the early bird registration for the first international conference on Contemporary Esotericism is about to expire on May 31. So if you are considering to attend what looks to be a very interesting conference with many juicy topics on the agenda, you may save some euros if you register now.

If you still need more convincing, do take some time to check out the list of confirmed speakers and titles that has now been made available. There are about fifty of them, and thematically they range from afro-american esoteric milieus, to occultism in the occupy movement, to Philip K. Dick’s newly released Exegesis, to the films of Alejandro Jodorowski,  to  ancient astronauts, entheogens, esotericism in the environmentalist movement, Satanism, left-hand path magic(k), right-wing paganism, left-wing paganism, chaos, anarchy, underground distribution practices, and much, much else besides. Have a look.

Also while you are at it, you may check out the full abstracts for the four keynote lectures. Quoted below for convenience:

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Published in: on May 13, 2012 at 10:22 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Contemporary Esotericism: Updated call for papers

contemporary esotericism

The 1st International Conference on Contemporary Esotericism will be held in Stockholm this August. The deadline for submitting papers is drawing closer (March 30), and there have been a couple of updates – including a new keynote speaker. Check out the call for papers below.

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International Conference on Contemporary Esotericism: Call for Papers

monas hieroglyphica contemporary lipstick on bathroom tilesAs advertised before, there will be a book out next year on Contemporary Esotericism, edited by Kennet Granholm and myself. The volume brings together well-established and up-and-coming scholars in the field of esotericism, with brand-new research articles on contemporary esoteric topics. In connection with the book, we are organising an international conference on the same topic, to be held at Stockholm University next August. Below you will find the full call for papers. You can also check out the conference website. It’s early, but we will accept proposals as soon as they start coming in, so no need to postpone thinking about it.

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Contemporary Esotericism – a pre-production advertisement

One of the reasons for not writing here very often this spring is that I am co-editing a major volume in my “spare time”. Last week I visited my good friend, colleague and co-editor Kennet Granholm at Stockholm University, to discuss some final issues. This weekend, we ship the manuscript off to Equinox Publishing – a full 689  pages – ending a period with much editorial work. To celebrate this, I’ll kick off some pre-production advertising of the volume, which bears the title Contemporary Esotericism.

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