Western Esotericism Print

Call for Proposals

This Group invites submissions for papers on esotericism and the media of transmission. Media is not understood here only in the sense of modern media or as related to popular culture (i.e., television or cinema), but in the broader sense of material or virtual carriers of information and ideas. This would include therefore transmission of esoteric ideas through manuscripts, printed documents, and rituals, and would especially focus on how the use of a particular medium can affect (and be affected by) the evolution or transformation of these ideas in a given cultural context. Another topic of choice is the senses in esoteric ideas and practices. Possible themes may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Esoteric rituals of purification of the senses
  • Discourses about esoteric/mystical perception
  • Esoteric/mystical physiologies of the senses
  • Rituals, focusing in particular on rituals of initiation and/or technologies of the self


This Group seeks to reflect and further stimulate the current process — reflected in the recent creation of new Chairs and teaching programs, international associations, journals, monograph series, and reference works — of professionalization and scholarly recognition of Western esotericism as a new area of research in the study of religion. For more information on the field, see the websites of the European Society for the Study of Western Esotericism, the Association for the Study of Esotericism, and the center for History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents at the University of Amsterdam. On these websites you will also find information on the academic journal Aries and the Aries Book Series (both published by Brill Academic Publishers).

Anonymity of Review Process

Proposer names are visible to Chairs but anonymous to steering committee members.


Cathy N. Gutierrez
Sweet Briar College
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Marco Pasi
Universiteit van Amsterdam
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Method of Submission