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Call for Papers - Edges of Freemasonry

  • 2012-09-07
  • 2012-09-08
  • Tampere, Finland
Edges of Freemasonry: Western Esotericism and the Enlightenment

7–8 September, 2012, University of Tampere, Finland

The School of Social Sciences and Humanities at the University of Tampere is organizing an international conference on Freemasonry, Western Esotericism and the development of the Enlightenment ideas. The conference is organized in association with the Research Lodge Minerva No. 27 of The Grand Lodge of F. & A. M. of Finland. The themes focus on historical developments, although other aspects will also be presented.

The conference is a two-day event open to scholars, postgraduate students and students, likewise to the members of masonic lodges and the public. The conference language is English.
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 papers, also from postgraduates, related to the themes or concepts of the Enlightenment, freemasonry, esotericism or the occult.
Papers should preferably to be sent via email to the conference secretaries Mr. Antti Harmainen ( and Ms. Katariina Lehto ( The organizers hope that papers for the general sessions will be sent not later than January 31, 2012. Papers for other sessions can also be sent later. Speakers are asked to supply their contact information, the title of the presentation and a short abstract (400—600 words).

For registration and details of the conference, please see For further information please do not hesitate to contact the secretaries or Professor Risto Harisalo ( and Dr. Marko Nenonen (, +358 40 577 9737.

Risto Harisalo Professor of Administrative Science President of the Conference Board
Pertti Haapala Professor of Finnish History School of Social Sciences and Humanities First Vice Rector of the University of Tampere Member of the Conference Board

Address: University of Tampere,
Kalevantie 4,
tel. +358 3 355 111

For further information check the conference homepage at


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