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Wouter J. Hanegraaff : Esotericism and the Academy: Rejected Knowledge in Western Culture


The European Society for the Study of Western Esotericism   -   ESSWE


The ESSWE is a learned society, established in 2005 to advance the academic study of the various manifestations of Western esotericism from late antiquity to the present, and to secure the future development of the field. 

Click here 


to download free scans of all issues of the first series of Aries: Journal for the Study of Western Esotericism (1985-1999). 

The ESSWE is an affiliated society of the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR) and a related scholarly organization of the American Academy of Religion (AAR) 

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)


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.