Western Esotericism

Response

“For a Secret Teaching, They Sure Do Write A Lot About It” – Is There a Gurdjieff Studies or only a Gurdjieff Industry?

While there is little disagreement as to the basic content of Gurdjieff’s spiritual teaching, there is currently no concrete proposal about the place of Gurdjieff within the broadly scientific study of religions. In David Robertson’s interview with Professor Carole Cusack of the University of Sydney and Steven Sutcliffe, Senior Lecturer in the Study of Religion at the University of Edinburgh, ...
Response

The Work of Carlo Ginzburg as the Researcher and the Reimagined Researched

what I will be addressing in this response, which I believe has become an area of concern for both ethnographers and subjects, are the effects that the ‘researcher’ might have in organising and constructing the identity of the ‘researched’ in emic self-representations. During the EASR/IAHR/NGG 2014 Conference on Religion and Pluralities of Knowledge at the University of Groningen, I had the privilege of attending Carlo Ginzburg’s presentation, followed by his interview with the Religious Studies Project.
Response

The Twilight of Esoteric Wanders and Academic Ponders

"If one is to understand esotericism as a general term of identification reproduced through articulated fields of discourse, Western esotericism can be treated as a historical phenomenon without being nominalistic or idealistic, but instead as a field of discourses of interpretation interacting." One of the most influential scholars in the contemporary academic study of Western esotericism is beyond doubt the erudite and highly productive Wouter J. Hanegraaff, professor ...
Podcast

Wouter Hanegraaff on Western Esotericism

In this interview, Professor Wouter Hanegraaff tells us about what he dubs “the biggest blank spaces of neglected territories in the study of religion”, namely Western esotericism. He tells how he first came over the German Folklorist Will-Erich Peuckert’s book Pansophie (1936) and discovered a group of renaissance thinkers he had never heard of, ...