Welcome to the second issue of the Sophia Project News, dedicated to the work of the Sophia Centre at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, and all our associated activities.
The Summer sees one of the key moments in the Sophia Centre's academic year, and that is our annual conference. The twelfth annual conference took place on 28-29 June in Bath, in the elegant surroundings of the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution. The weather was fine, our lecture room full and a series of speakers addressed the topic, 'The Marriage of Heaven and Earth: Images and Representations of the Sky in Sacred Space'. The range of topics spanned the continents from Africa (Juan Antonio Belmonte on 'Cosmic landscapes in ancient Egypt' to the Americas (Kim Malville on 'The Parallelism of Heaven and Earth in Andean Cultures'), and from the ancient to the modern (Shon Hopkins of Brigham Young University, on 'The Joining of Heaven and Earth in Mormon Temples and Sacred Texts'). The penultimate presentation saw Jim Cogswell of the University of Michigan, showing his film, the 'Jewelled Net of the Vast Invisible: a multi-media experience of cosmological space' .
The proceedings will be published by the Sophia Centre Press in 2015.
The 2015 conference dates will be 27-28 June and the call for papers can be found at the end of this newsletter.
Dr Nicholas Campion.
Click here to access the conference recordings and powerpoints: The Marriage of Heaven and Earth
Dr Nick Campion, Senior Lecturer.
Photograph: Gaia Somosca
The Lampeter Campus
Screen Capture. Trinity St David The University of Wales' Home Page
There are both beginnings and endings to note at this, the start of the academic year. Firstly, we warmly welcome our new students who are just about to embark on their MA journey. Secondly, we wish the eight students who are submitting their Dissertations this month all the very best of luck.
Those starting their MA's and those completing them appear to be at such different points in the MA journey, but there is a common bond and that is their connection with the community which finds its location in the Sophia Centre at Lampeter, Wales. Here's to a great Autumn term for everyone.
The subjects being taught this term include the Introductory module for our new students, whilst those already embarked on their MA's have chosen between either Path 1 - Inner Cosmos Sky and Psyche or Path 2, Stars and Stones - Sacred Geography. Enjoy.
Editor. SP News
Astrologies and Psychologies
Sky and Psyche tutor Laura Andrikopoulos discusses her module.
There are a number of fundamental questions which drive the Sky and Psyche module. The primary one considers the relationship between cosmos and psyche. Another asks whether astrology has always been psychological. Thirdly, we explore Jung's theories to see if they were influenced by his astrological and esoteric interests. This is a module which focuses on the so-called psychological astrologies, particularly those of the 20th century.
Psychological Astrology in the Renaissance
The question of astrology's relationship to that which is 'psychological' lies at the heart of our discussion and it leads us to ask whether astrology has always had some connection with psyche. We make a special case-study of the astrology of Marsilio Ficino (1433-1499), the highly influential renaissance philosopher, astrologer and translator of Plato and the Corpus Hermeticum, and we consider how contemporary commentators have presented and reinterpreted his astrology in a variety of ways.
The Discovery of the Unconscious
Because psychology has grown as a discipline over the last few centuries, we examine the 'discovery' of the unconscious, tracing the development of dynamic psychiatry from Mesmer (1734-1815), to Freud and Jung. We explore the extent to which psychoanalysis was influenced by Freud's knowledge of Jewish mysticism, and to what degree Jung's ideas were infused by his extensive reading of esoteric and mystical texts. We also analyse the way Freud and Jung's esoteric ideas interwove.
C.G. Jung: Esoteric Cosmology in a Secular Age
Jung in particular has been an important influence on 20th and 21st century astrologies, so we consider the key ideas of his analytical psychology which include, individuation, the archetypes, the collective unconscious, synchronicity, psychological alchemy, and the psychoid nature of reality. We touch on whether his cosmology has acted as a counterpoint to the increasing modernisation and secularisation of the last two centuries, and consider his deep interest in astrology, which spanned the last forty years of his life.
Astrologers as Psychological Reformers
Psychologically-inclined astrologers who were keen to innovate and modernise played an important role in western astrology's development over the 20th century. So we examine the texts of the key protagonists: Alan Leo, Dane Rudhyar, Charles Carter, Liz Greene and Stephen Arroyo. Whilst theosophist Leo helped to simplify and modernise astrology, Rudyhar absorbed the work of Jung and integrated it with his own astrological understanding as early as 1936 in his groundbreaking, Astrology of Personality. Greene and Arroyo represent a second or third wave of psychological innovation, their popular works helping to make psychological astrology the dominant strand within astrological thinking during the closing decades of the 20th century.
Astrologies and Psychologies
As there are many astrologies, so are there many psychologies, each of which inform and influence the other. Transpersonal and archetypal psychologies are particularly good matches, so we examine the key ideas in this area, in particular the work of James Hillman who not only founded the archetypal school of psychology but also enjoyed deep astrological reflection finding within the birth chart a rich stimulus to the imagination and forging of soul. Richard Tarnas' work provides a further example of archetypal astrology, so we explore the philosophy espoused in his book Cosmos and Psyche (2006), which combines the influences of Plato, Jung and Hillman, amongst others.
Tradition, post-modernism and the future of psyche in astrology
As the module draws to a close we look at the revival of interest in traditional astrological texts and the impact this has had onpsychological astrology. The fundamental question which underpins the Sky and Psyche module remains always that exploration of where psyche finds its place in the ongoing astrological discourse of the 21st century.Engraving. 'Saturn and Melancholy.' Dolendo. 1595-96. Repository Unknown.
Photograph: Carl Gustav Jung. © Soylent Communications 2014.
If you would like to know more about the Sky and Psyche module Laura Andrikopoulos can be contacted via this link: Sky and Psyche
Sky, Religion, Politics, and Stone
Welsh Monastic Skyscapes: a research project of the Sophia Centre, University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Bernadette Brady and Fabio Silva surveying Tintern Abbey, Monmouthshire. Photo Pam Armstrong.
A brief note on the project by Bernadette Brady
In the month of August the Sophia Centre provided funding to enable a pilot study on Welsh Monastic Skyscapes to be carried out. The Welsh monasteries, their location, orientation, and stonework, represent human activity that sought to build a place for God on earth, or as Megan Cassidy-Welch stated, to build 'the earthly manifestation of heavenly space, a site that was suffused with celestial longing'. But any human-shaped landscape is complex. Belden Lane spoke of understanding human activity in a landscape by telling its story, ' to weave a narrative that embraces the energies of land and sky in suggesting common meanings only discovered together.' It is this 'discovered together' notion of Lane's that we are adopting for the project and thus we have developed an interdisciplinary methodology, which draws together the fields of anthropology, archaeology, archaeoastronomy, art history, and medieval history.
Talley Abbey, Carmarthenshire. Bernadette Brady discussing the abbey's site plan, with Nick Campion and Fabio Silva. Photo Darrelyn Gunzburg
This approach is revealing the skyscapes of approximately twenty Welsh monastic sites where the skyscape is seen as the complex union of the monastery's unique relationship to the heavens in its landscape, along with its own story, architecture, stone work, and local topography. The project so far has offered us insights into the consequences, implications and legacies of pre- and post-1066 ideas about sacred space/time, how these were implicit in the stonework and orientation of the buildings, and how the structure of the monasteries themselves acted to capture in stone and sky the religious, political and cultural affiliations of the turbulent years in Wales post the Norman Conquest.
Bernadette Brady, Fabio Silva and Darrelyn Gunzburg surveying Haverfordwest Priory, Pembrokeshire. Photo Pam Armstrong
We are covering over 1200 miles of Wales from the beautiful island of Anglesey to the rugged west coast with the enchanting due south-oriented tiny chapel of St Non's , inland to the green mountains of Snowdonia and then onto the Beacon Beacons and finally sweeping down into the lower terrains of the busy populated south. Although our car conversations have been about monasteries, longitudes and latitudes, Saints and stones, we have all, in our own ways, been spell bound by the beauty of Wales in summer. Like all field work we come back home after each trip exhausted but also exhilarated by the growing body of data which is slowly building a set of case studies of each monastery's skyscapes that appears to be commenting on the monastery's place in the political and religious history of Wales.
The Pilot Study Team is: Dr. Bernadette Brady, Dr. Fabio Silva, Dr. Darrelyn Gunzburg and Pam Armstrong MA.
 Megan Cassidy-Welch, Monastic spaces and their meanings, thirteenth-century English Cistercian monasteries (Belgium: Brepols, 2001), p.165.
 Lane, Belden C. Landscapes of the sacred: geography and narrative in American spirituality. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001. p.58
Skies Ancient and Modern
Rethinking Skyscapes, Cosmology and Archaeology
Dr. Fabio Silva. Skyscapes, Cosmology and Archaeology Tutor. Photo courtesy Gaia Somasca MA
This academic year the Archaeoastronomy module is changing its name to Skyscapes, Cosmology and Archaeology. This change of label mirrors the evolution of the module's content into a more far-reaching exploration of what people see in the sky and how they make sense of and engage with it, via the study of their structures and other material remains.
The use of the term astronomy in the study of past societies is anachronistic. It carries modern and western assumptions that should not be projected onto other societies, past or present. Astronomy is based on mathematics and statistics. It is devoid of meaning and implies an objective view of nature. But not all societies see the sky in this way. That is why the Sophia Centre has appropriated the term 'Skyscapes' which, as a new term, is value-free except that is evokes the similar term, landscapes.
The skyscape extends the landscape upwards into consideration of the celestial sphere and its inhabitants and how they relate back down to human affairs and beliefs. Thus a study of the skyscape combines a sensitivity not just to structures and the material record, but also to societies and cultures, their beliefs, practices and cosmology. This requires a stronger grounding in, and engagement with archaeological data and practice. This new way of doing archaeoastronomy has been more formally established in a forthcoming Oxbow volume Skyscapes: the role and importance of the sky in Archaeology (edited by Fabio Silva and Nick Campion) as well as in the upcoming Journal of Skyscape Archaeology (edited by Fabio Silva and Liz Henty, a Sophia Centre MA graduate now working on her PhD).
The content of the module has also been revamped. It features an approach to the topic that is humanities-based (no mathematics is required!) and is deeply grounded on the archaeological record and fieldwork. The Skyscapes, Cosmology and Archaeology module is now effectively the archaeological branch of the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology. Those who take it can expect to learn: how the sky moves and how different the sky was in the past; the pillars of archaeological practice and interpretation; how to plan and conduct field surveys of ancient monuments; how to relate the material record to the skyscape; and to learn about the cosmologies, beliefs and practices associated with the skyscapes of past societies.
Dr. Fabio Silva, Photo: www.miguelclaro.com/wp/?portfolio=almendres-cromlech-startra
The Alumni Association of the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology has now been instigated and was implemented at the MA Summer School in Bath in July. Any graduate of the MA CAA at Bath Spa University or the University of Wales Trinity Saint David is automatically a member of the Alumni Association. The Association has been launched to give all graduates a forum for staying connected via news of its activities and those of its members which will be placed each quarter in the Newsletter.
The Alumni Association also aims to raise money for small grants to enable travel to the MA Summer School, appropriate conferences, small one -off scholarships to offset fees, and other small grants to offset costs involved in alumni PR exercises. Full guidelines for when and how to apply for these small grants and what is required will be set out and placed on the website in due course.
The website will eventually have a place where donations large and small can be made. Nevertheless to kick start the fund-raising, unsold prints from the Visions of Heaven exhibition which I curated in 2011 as an adjunct exhibition to the Heavenly Discourses conference that Nick and I co-convened, were sold at the 2014 MA Sumer School/Sophia conference at discount prices. This raised a total of £610. Thank you to all who bought a print. We have also since then had a generous donation of £1,000 from an appreciative Alumnus and for this we gratefully thank Ali Black.
The Steering Committee currently consists of myself, Nick Campion, Faye Cossar, Jennifer Fleming, Hanne Skagen, and Steve Judd. Our task is to initiate Alumni events and activities and get the Association underway. We look forward to this being an enriched and fulfilling connection for all graduates, one that builds on your time as a student on this unique and extraordinary MA.
Dr Darrelyn Gunzburg
Alumni Association Steering Committee
Cosmos, Chaosmos and Astrology: Rethinking the Nature of Astrology
Bernadette Brady (Sophia Centre Press, 2014)
This book is the first of a new series of monographs published by the Sophia Centre Press. It packs a lot into its 147 pages and makes a stimulating contribution to the ongoing debate, as old as astrology itself, regarding its nature. The starting concepts are those of cosmos - very briefly, an arrangement of the world that is causally ordered and, to that extent, rational - as against chaosmos, a 'non-linear' and apparently disordered world that is full of possibilities. One implication is that chaosmos is the more fundamental of the two, with cosmos emerging from and returning to it, perhaps perpetually.
Yet in Western philosophy and science, it is cosmos that has achieved dominance. Undoubtedly, the promise of being able to be fully known and even mastered, thus offering the control and security that humanity always finds so enticing, is a major reason why. Whatever the reasons, however, Brady's succinct historical survey of how its now global dominance came about, from its origins in ancient Greek philosophy through early modern European astronomy to modern physics, is completely convincing.
She then shows astrology's deep cosmological, philosophical and historical affinity with chaosmos. Significantly, among all the adaptations and accommodations astrology has made in order to survive in an astonishing range of cultures, it has proved unable to 'become scientific' - that is, fit in with the demands of a rationally-ordered cosmos. Any parts of astrology that do so accord (e.g. lunar tides) have been absorbed by science, while after being put through the scientific mangle, nothing of astrological practice (I mean what astrologers actually do) remains: which is to say, the heart of it.
Brady interprets 'the long and unsuccessful struggle to align astrology with cosmos' as evidence that the view of astrology as culturally relative has limits; in other words, that its chaosmotic nature is something 'real'. This overlooks the cultural dimension of the very concept of chaosmos. Nonetheless, it is a definite advance on the constructionism that dominates 'cultural astronomy', which assumes that the sky - indeed, the world - is passive, a blank canvas without any meanings at all except those we human beings graciously deign to give it, whether consciously or unconsciously through 'projection'. As the anthropologist Tim Ingold has shown, this supposedly universal truth is in fact a peculiarly modern and Western worldview, and one which, furthermore, results in arbitrarily dividing the natural world into one that is 'really natural' (studied by natural scientists) and another that is 'culturally perceived' (studied by social scientists).
Brady's suggestion is an advance on this radical incoherence, then, because it rightly assumes that the nature of astrology, as well as its meanings in practice, results not from a sovereign (human) mind confronting an inert world of objects but from an ongoing creative interaction of mind and world (or even mind-in-the-world and world-in-the-mind). Since such interaction is patterned, not arbitrarily but meaningfully, it makes sense to speak of astrology as something with a relatively stable essence.
At the same time, chaos and complexity construal of astrology recognises the crucial importance in astrology, as in life itself - indeed, the necessity - of personal participation. Without it, nothing definite ensues. So I also welcome the rejection of the assumption that astrology (or anything else) can be studied and understood 'objectively', in the sense of independently of our own relationships with it, and perceptions and conceptions of it. This phantom has plagued astrology for far too long.
The more precise key to the nature of astrology, Brady argues, is a combination of Stoic sumpatheia - the chaosmotic element - with the cosmic surety of Pythagorean number symbolism. I'm not sure about this (and I mean just that, not that I think she is wrong), but in any case it makes deep intuitive sense that the dimension of chaosmos in astrology includes a concession to cosmic order and structure. There is also a plausible implication that part of astrology's extraordinary adaptability is its ability to shift between the two, as changing socio-historical and intellectual circumstances require.
The next step is to introduce chaos and complexity theory as a return of chaosmos into modern thought: an attempt to recover that sort of world, and to articulate it in a new language (attractors, bifurcations, scale invariance and so on). Speaking as a non-expert (and therefore probably a typical reader), I can confirm that Brady does a very good job of making these terms comprehensible and compelling.
The upshot of mapping astrology onto chaos and complexity theory (and possibly the other way round) is her suggestion - and this is the heart of her argument, and its originality - that astrology evolved as a ritual embodying an intuitive attempt to find sufficient emerging order in the chaosmos to be able to act with some assurance of doing so in accordance with that order, and the tradition that resulted from, and came to inform, that attempt: 'a vernacular expression of complexity' that is 'a way of living with and in chaosmos', as she nicely puts it.
The extent to which astrology and complexity theory do indeed correspond is impressive, and it exceeds what I can discuss here. This doesn't 'explain' astrology, of course. But that is an absurdly inflated ambition anyway; all that a new model can do is offer a new metaphor and say, 'Look, if you see astrology as x then it looks like this, and here's some new things we can learn about it as a result...' This process, part discovery and part creation, is just how we learn something new. And thankfully, Brady is careful to offer her model not as the ultimate truth about astrology but as one that is good to think astrology through. It thus joins other such models - notably, in recent decades, Jungian archetypes and divination - without replacing them. (In fact, it is fascinating to see how the chaos and complexity model partially accommodates both archetypal and divinatory perspectives.)
At one point, Brady defines complexity as 'the state of liminality which exists in the place between the abyss of chaos and the order of cosmos...the place of creation.' I think this book is itself just such a creation, issuing from that liminal place between the chaos of popular religion and the cosmos of academic order. May it be the first of many more in this series.
Cosmos, Chaosmos and Astrology: Rethinking the Nature of Astrology
(Sophia Centre Press, 2014)
Our Recommended Book Feature
English almanacs, astrology & popular medicine: 1550- 1700
Louise Hill Curth
Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2008.
Louise Curth's study of English almanacs, first published in 2007, has now been issued in paperback, making it accessible to the buyer with a limited budget. Curth's background is as a lecturer in Health Studies, and she taught at Bath Spa University when the Sophia Centre was based there. Curth's erudite scholarship and fluid writing make for a thoroughly engaging book.
She contests various scholarly issues (such as the confusion she identifies over the 'popularity' of popular culture), challenges easy historical assumptions (such as that professional physicians consulted texts in Latin and Greek, shunning English language literature) and is alert to the female role in health care in an age when most horoscopic astrologers were men. She considers the almanacs themselves in their social and political context, and analyses their medical role into three: preventative, remedial and, important for the time, the diagnosis and treatment of animals.
And lastly, in her closing sentence, she reminds us that the almanacs were what we would now know as 'interactive' (although she doesn't use the word): the prevalence of handwritten notes in surviving copies indicates that readers were in a dialogue with the texts (remember that the text on the page may have been static, but the celestial movements they described were not). Highly recommended.
Dr Nicholas CampionLouise Hill Curth. English almanacs. Manchester University Press
School of 2014
Congratulations to Kathryn Voge and Emilija Ema Krnjajski who have achieved their Postgraduate Diplomas and to Saffi Grey on achieving her Postgraduate Certificate. Ema plans to return to write her dissertation, and Saffi will be back this October to complete her MA.
And Congratulations also, to this year's graduating students, listed below with the titles of their Dissertations.
The Long and Winding Road
Karine Dilanyan writes about travelling to Wales to graduate in person
Karine Dilanyan MA, Dr Bernadette Brady & Vice-Chancellor Dr. Medwin Hughes.
Photo courtesy Dr Darrelyn Gunzburg
My Graduation Day
Frankly - the truth of it is that I was saying to myself just two days before the ceremony, I was ready not to go to Lampeter. I live in Russia and I worried about whether I will be able to reach the university in time: the route seemed very difficult, and explanations on the website of the university were for me, starting my travel from Moscow, too uncertain.
However Bernadette e-mailed me a detailed map with a route, besides this I recalled that last year during the Summer School Bernadette taught us how to define one's location on a landscape with a help of a mobile phone and GPS navigator. Therefore, I told myself "it happens once in a lifetime", printed Bernadette's map and went to travel.
All my fears were unreasonable: people along the route were very helpful, planes, trains and buses were coming on time, and having landed at Heathrow and travelled across country, I appeared at the university in Lampeter at 5 pm on the day before the ceremony.
Next morning the graduates, robed in their academic gowns and mortar boards, entered the main hall of the university. The ceremony was wonderful: the tutors of the university filled the stage. The inspiring and warm speech of Dr. Medwin Hughes, the Vice-Chancellor of the university, who welcomed and greeted all participants, followed by solemn procession of the graduates, was very impressive.
Dr Darrelyn Gunzburg, Pamela, Dr Bernadette Brady and myself.
Photo courtesy A J Gilbert.
And finally, we filled ours glasses and gave a toast with champagne to celebrate this rotary day which finished one stage of our life and marked the beginnings of another - entry into the academy world.
Pamela and her son, myself and Dr Darrelyn Gunzburg.
Photo courtesy Dr Bernadette Brady.
It was such a beautiful, hot sunny day that Bernadette, Darrelyn, Pamela, her son and me were able to journey to the coast and sit in the open air near the sea during our celebratory lunch and I was thinking about the words that had been said during the ceremony: "Leave some space in your heart for Lampeter".
Yes, true words. It was a right decision to come here, to come in touch with the ancient stones of the university and with the warm feelings of my fellow student and my tutors. The only thing in the distant learning system that does not suffice for me and I guess those of us who live too far from the Island - is this personal contact. Attending the Graduation Day, sharing your high emotions with your fellow adherents is a wonderful reward.
Summer School 2014Photograph courtesy of Gaia Somasca MA
This summer lots of happy people descended on England, headed in the direction of the West Country. The smart ones weren't there for Dolly Parton and the Glastonbury gang, they headed straight to the beautiful city of Bath Spa to catch up with old friends and meet new ones at the annual Sophia Centre Summer School.
Summer schoolers know that there is nothing better than an evening at All Bar One and a few happy reunions the next day to dissolve the huge geographical distances that separate us. Old friends were reunited and a large contingency of excited newcomers quickly became part of the family.
It's always exciting for students to get a glimpse of one another's work and to get the chance to offer constructive criticism. These presentations also provide an opportunity to see the amazing range of knowledge and territory the Sophia programme covers, from South African shamanism to Sean's Japanese views of astrology with a treasure trove of Egyptian phalluses discovered by Alison in-between. For many of us, Ada's report of her visit to Sark island, site of a dark sky reserve, was literally a voyage to an undiscovered part of the globe. Closer to home, Laura's presentation of works by Liz Greene provided some nostalgia for members of the Sophia family.
Many in the Sophia family are interested or involved with astrology, and this year it was so rewarding to have a few lectures that explored one or other angle of it, the highlight being Bernadette taking on cotemporary 'evolutionary' schools of astrology and revealing her concept of Dark Green Astrology in her usual inspiring way. It was also a special treat for us to enjoy a chance to hear Kim Malville in person, his warm, engaging style and passion for his subject sweeping us off on a Peruvian adventure. Of course, it's also such a joy to have Nick, Anthony and Darrelyn inspire us in person rather than on the other side of a screen.The skyscape we walked through at Stonehenge during our field trip.
Photo courtesy Gaia Somasca MA
The highlight of the week is always the field trip, and the excursion to Stonehenge led by Fabio was our most adventurous of all, eschewing the museum angle and heading straight for the hills and the still amazing monument itself, followed by a long walk through the still-discernable ancient landscape to Woodhenge and on to Avebury for a lovely late lunch and a chance to explore the famous stone circle. The trip home provided an opportunity for the sharp-eyed to spot a brand new crop circle in a nearby field and a great view of one of the famous white horses of Wiltshire.
The annual summer school seems to be the final ingredient that holds together a class spread over time and space, yet united in common passions and goals, and as ever we all went away inspired, our serious study goals renewed, and a spare thought already looking forward to the next one.
University of Wales Trinity St David's 'Inspire' Photography Competition
Prize Winner, Sophia Centre Student Eva Young receiving her award from Senior Lecturer Dr. Nick Campion
Congratulations to Eva Young pictured here receiving her prize for winning TSD's 'Inspire' Photography Competition. Eva had the option of chosing between a kobo tablet, or a reader and she chose the tablet.
When I asked about her win she said she was 'totally thrilled'. Then she added, 'And especially for our MA/department, and then thrilled all over again to get up and receive it in person, surrounded as I was by friends and fellow students. It was such a FABULOUS summer school and conference all round - magical!'
Here's another view of Eva's magical photo.
'Hazel Ray' Eva Young
University of Wales Trinity Saint David
The Sophia Centre for the Study of
Cosmology in Culture,
School of Archaeology, History and Anthropology
Annual Sophia Centre Conference
Call for Papers
Astrology as Art: Representation and Practice
27-28 June 2015
Venue: Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution, Bath, England
Keynote: Professor Hilary Carey, University of Bristol
Astrology as Art: Representation and Practice
Astrology is often described as an art. However, the implications of this statement are rarely, if ever, discussed. At the same time the zodiac, stars and planets have often been a source of inspiration for artists. Yet the meaning of what is portrayed, and the intent of the artist, are rarely considered. In what sense is astrology an art, and in what ways does it become the subject of artistic representation?
This academic conference will consider the relationship between astrology and art.
We invite submissions for lectures of thirty minutes in two areas: the practice of astrology and the representation of images depicting, representing or referring to the zodiac, stars and planets in any media. Speakers are invited to consider the nature and definitions of art.
When considering the practice of astrology, questions might include the nature of astrological texts and the assumptions they reveal, the ways in which astrologers work with clients and identify meaning in the cosmos. When examining the depiction or representation of the zodiac, stars and planets, questions may arise concerning the nature of signification, symbolism, agency or magic. Submissions may tackle any period or culture: for example, Babylonian, Hellenistic, Medieval, Modern, Chinese, Indian or Mesoamerican.
Please send an abstract of 100-200 words and a biography of 50-100 words to
Dr Nicholas Campion
School of Archaeology, History and Anthropology
Deadline for applications to speak: 31 December 2014
The Programme will be confirmed by 31 January 2015
The Proceedings will be published by the Sophia Centre Press
Next out - 21st September 2014
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