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spcr ESSWE Affiliated, Regional, Thematic Networks, ESSWE

ESSWE Affiliated, Regional, Thematic Networks


The ESSWE encourages the establishment of networks of scholars sharing an interest in particular themes within the field. The purpose of these networks is to strengthen communication and cooperation among the scholars involved, whether by means of discussions, meetings, or more structured cooperation.

Proposing networks

Persons interested in establishing thematic networks should submit a short proposal (2-4 pages) covering:

  • the objectives of the network (its mission and goals)
  • who will lead it (please attach CVs)
  • who might be its founding members (supply names and institutional affiliations, if known)
  • how the network will operate and be organized
  • and what possible activities are envisaged over the network's first two years (in as much detail as possible).

Proposals should be sent to the ESSWE Secretary.


Thematic Networks

Contemporary Esotericism Research Network (ContERN)

ContERN connects scholars working on esotericism in the contemporary world. Our primary goals are to promote scholarship on contemporary esotericism in ways that are congruent with the broader field of Western esotericism; encourage the integration of social scientific theoretical and methodological approaches and perspectives while maintaining a strong emphasis on historical awareness; and actively encourage the development of new theory and method in the field.

ContERN works to create possibilities for networking and forums for scholarly discussion through the organisation of conferences, conference panels, and scholarly publications, but also by maintaining an online presence. Promoting interdisciplinary cooperation is also central to ContERNs goals, and the network seeks to interact with, e.g., sociology, anthropology and various subdisciplines of religious studies.

Please find more information at the ContERN website, and Google group.

Network organizers/coordinators:

Egil Asprem (University of Amsterdam) e.asprem@uva.nl (Coordinator)
Kennet Granholm (Stockholm University) kennet.granholm@rel.su.se (Coordinator)


ESSWE Network for the Study of Esotericism in Antiquity

The Network for the Study of Esotericism in Antiquity (NSEA) provides contact for specialists of ancient esoteric thought, history, and literature. While the ancient sources (Gnostic, theurgic, Neoplatonic, Hermetic, etc.) of Western Esotericism possess enormous importance for the development of esoteric currents from the fourteenth century onwards, there remains only a minimum of interaction between the antiquity experts and their (proto)-modern colleagues. The Network therefore is intended to introduce scholarship on ancient Esotericism to the rest of ESSWE, ideally culminating in a panel or workshop on ancient Esotericism at the 2013 meeting of the ESSWE. It also serves as a forum in which to exchange ideas, notes and references, etc. outside of other professional bodies which are not concerned with Esotericism per se, and to coordinate study and workshops with other working groups on the subject, such as the Society of Biblical Literature's Section on Esotericism and Mysticism in Antiquity.

Founding Members of the NSEA include:

Brian Alt (University of Indiana)
Dylan M. Burns (University of Copenhagen)
April Deconick (Rice University)

Lautaro Roig Lanzillotta (University of Groningen)
Nicholas Marshall (Aarhus University)

Joyce Pijnenburg (University of Amsterdam)
Lisa Emma Pizzighella (Università Ca' Foscari Venezia)

Kocku von Stuckrad (University of Groningen)
David Tibet (Macquarie University)

Click HERE to visit the NSEA website

For more information, please contact Dylan M. Burns (dylanburns93@yahoo.com)


WEAVE: Western Esotericism in modern Art and Visual Culture

WEAVE is a research network connecting scholars studying the interplay of heterodox spiritualties with Modern western art and visual culture. Scholars of all disciplines, interests, backgrounds and convictions are welcome. The phrase “heterodox spirituality” includes Western esotericism, occultism, occulture, mysticism, alternative Modern spirituality, and contemporary spiritualities.

The Network’s research scope is limited to:

1) Western art and cultural history, allowing for the study of heterodox spiritualties from other regions than “the West”, as long as the relationship with Western art and culture is the research objective;

2) the Modern and contemporary period, but allowing for the study of the reception, afterlife/nachleben, diachronic cultural resonance, or mnemo-historical development of pre-Modern art and visual culture in (post) Modernity;

3) visual culture, including the screen arts, the performing arts, and architecture, as well as design, painting, the graphical arts, sculpture, mixed media and applied arts; to be furthermore extended to other arts such as literature and music when there is an obvious visual component present—i.e., word/image, text/performance, music/image or image/structure relations. Outsider art, marginal or peripheral cultural expressions, popular culture, folk culture, etc., is emphatically included.

Founding Members of WEAVE:

Christian Giudice MA – Gothenburg University, SWE
Dr. Tessel M. Bauduin – Radboud University Nijmegen, NL
Nina Kokkinen MA – University of Turku, FIN
Dr. Victoria Ferentinou – Ioannina University
Dr. Victoria Nelson – Goddard College
Per Faxneld MA – Stockholm University
Dr. Jonathan Shirland – Bridgewater State University
Prof. dr. Christopher Partridge – Lancaster University
Prof. dr. Raphael Rosenberg – University of Vienna
Dr. Henrik Bogdan – Gothenburg University
Dr. Marco Pasi – University of Amsterdam
Dr. Lars Bang Larsen – University of Copenhagen
Prof. dr. Christoph Wagner – University of Regensburg
Dr. Marty Bax – independent art historian and owner of Baxart

Click HERE to visit the WEAVE website


Regional Networks

INASWE: Israeli Network for the Academic Study of Western Esotericism
INASWE hosted their inaugural conference, Western Esotericism: Historical Contexts & Cultural Contacts on 18 May 2011.
Click here for the ESSWE Israel Google Group


SNASWE: Scandinavian Network for the Academic Study of Western Esotericism
Click here for the SNASWE blog


Affiliated Networks

CEEO-UNASUR: Center for the Study of Western Esotericism of the Union of South American Nations
Since 2011 the Center for the Study of Western Esotericism of the Union of South American Nations (CEEO-UNASUR) has been an international network of South American scholars, whose main mission is to advance academic research and teaching in the field of Western Esotericism. The Center was created by its current Director, Dr. Juan Pablo Bubello, as a result of his doctoral research training and experience as a teacher and researcher at the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Among the objectives and activities of the Center are:

  • continuation of teaching and research tasks that are being developed in the South American universities
  • publication of papers and books related to Western Esotericism
  • promotion of seminars, conferences, symposia and national and international meetings aimed at further opportunities for analysis of issues and problems related to the area
  • establishment of networks of academic exchange among scholars in and beyond South America
  • encouraging the development of original research from advanced students to give rise to new theses and PhDs related to Western Esotericism
  • dissemination activities in the mass media

Click HERE for full information about the CEEO-UNASUR, or email Dr. Juan Pablo Bubello.

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