“Alchemy: Between Science and Religion” – a workshop

On 24 June the European Society for the Study of Western Esotericism (ESSWE) will organize a one-day workshop on alchemy in Amsterdam. Some of the top experts of alchemy will present papers, including Professor Lawrence Principe of John Hopkins University. Although the main focus is on alchemy and its ambiguous relation to early modern natural philosophy and religion, the workshop is intended for graduate and postgraduate students working with themes related to esotericism more generally. Since it coincides with the board meeting of the ESSWE, virtually all the leading scholars of western esotericism will be present, including Antoine Faivre, Wouter Hanegraaff, Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke, Boaz Huss, Mark Sedgwick, and Gyorgy Szonyi. They will all happily engage in discussions with students and young researchers.

In short: A great opportunity if you’re doing an MA or PhD in this area, and can make it to Amsterdam in June. Another notable perk: It’s free. For more details, check out the announcement, which I also post in its entirety below.



Some notes on scientism

The word “scientism” gets tossed around a lot in critical public debates about science’s place in society. Usually it is used derogatorily to dismiss a trend in using science which the user of the word doesn’t like. Used in this way, it is a rhetorical label without much analytic content. But it may also be turned into a useful category for analyzing historical data.


Conference panel: Seduced by Science

This has already been disseminated through other channels, but I’ll post it here anyway. My colleague Tessel Bauduin and I are organizing a panel at the next Quinquennial World Congress of the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR). It’s in Toronto, it’s in August, and the title of the panel is “Seduced by Science: The culture of religion and science in the early 20th century”. We’re accepting paper proposals until April 15. See below for the details.


Published in: on March 7, 2010 at 1:32 pm  Comments (2)