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CALL. 01.04.2016: Magic. Construction and Perception of the Magic World from Antiquity to Our Times



LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Museum of Religions “Raffaele Pettazzoni” (Velletri, Italy) ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Igor Baglioni



This congress aims at investigating the concept of “magic” on the basis of the historical data at our disposal and according to the development of Western thought. Therefore, different kinds of documentation relating to beliefs and rituals will be the object of our investigation. In particular, papers could deal with the following topics:

1. The origin of the concept of “magic” and its development in Western thought.

2. The nature and scope of the sources at our disposal as documentation for this topic.

3. The specific terminology of the sources in relation to the ritual sphere and experts of magic; also, the terminology used for supernatural entities and conceptions of the cosmos.

4. The ritual practices that in the sources are related to the sphere of magic.

5. Historical or mythical personalities, which in the sources are related to the magical world.

6. Objects, which, in the sources, are presented as tools in magical activities.

7. The history of studies.

Please note: papers focussing on single, specific cases and not related to the general aim of the congress will not be accepted.

References: E. de Martino, Il mondo magico. Prolegomeni a una storia del magismo, Torino 1948; E. de Martino (a cura di), Magia e civiltà, Milano 1962; C. Ginzburg, I benandanti. Stregoneria e culti agrari tra Cinquecento e Seicento, Roma 1965; P. Xella (a cura di), Magia. Studi di storia delle religioni in memoria di Raffaella Garosi, Roma 1976; F.A. Yates, The Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age, London 1979; W. Monter, Ritual, myth and magic in early modern Europe, Athens (Ohio) 1983; S. Abbiati - A. Agnoletto - M. R. Lazzati (a cura di), La stregoneria. Diavoli, streghe, inquisitori dal Trecento al Settecento, Milano 1984; L. Kákosy - A. Roccati (a cura di), La Magia in Egitto ai tempi dei faraoni, Milano 1985; R.K. Ritner, The Mechanics of Ancient Egyptian Magical Practice, Chicago 1993; F. Graf, La magie dans l’antiquité gréco-romaine. Idéologie et pratique, Paris 1994; G. Pinch, Magic in Ancient Egypt, London 1994; Y. Koenig, Magie et Magiciens dans l’Égypte ancienne, Paris 1994; M.W. Meyer - P. Mirecki, Ancient Magic and Ritual Power, Leiden 1995; P. Scarpi, La sapienza di Medea, “Il Mondo” 3 (1-2), 1996, pp. 348-364; G. Cunningham, “Deliver Me From Evil”, Mesopotamian Incantations 2500-1500 BC., Rome 1997; Ch.A. Faraone - D. Obbink (eds.), Magika hiera: ancient greek magic and religion, Oxford 1997; M. Gijswijt-Hofstra - B.P. Levack - R. Porter, Witchcraft and Magic in Europe: The Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries, London-Philadelphia 1999; T. Zbusch - K. van der Toorn (eds.), Mesopotamian Magic. Textual, Historical and Interpretative Perspectives, Groningen 1999; G. Bohak, Ancient Jewish Magic: A History, Cambridge 2011; T. Abusch, Mesopotamian Witchcraft: Toward a History and Understanding of Babylonian Witchcraft Beliefs and Literature, Leiden 2002; M. Macleod - B. Mees, Runic Amulets and Magic Objects, Woodbridge 2006; S. A. Mitchell, Witchcraft and Magic in the Nordic Middle Ages, Philadelphia 2011; M.J. Raven, Egyptian Magic. The Quest for Thoth’s Book of Secrets, Cairo 2012; M. Caffiero, Legami pericolosi. Ebrei e cristiani tra eresia, libri proibiti e stregoneria, Torino 2012; M. de Haro Sanchez (éd.), Écrire la magie dans l’antiquité, Liège 2015; M. Caffiero (a cura di), Magia, superstizione, religione. Una questione di confini, Roma 2015.

The workshop is structured into six research areas:

1. Egypt and the Ancient Near East (coordinator: Rita Lucarelli - University of California, Berkeley)

2. Classical antiquity (coordinator: Sabina Crippa - Università Ca’ Foscari di Venezia)

3. Medieval period (coordinator: Carla Del Zotto - Sapienza Università di Roma)

4. Modern era (coordinator: Marina Caffiero - Sapienza Università di Roma)

5. Contemporary era (coordinator: Silvia Mancini - Université de Lausanne)

6. History of Studies (coordinator: Paolo Scarpi - Università degli Studi di Padova)

Administration: Igor Baglioni (Museo delle Religioni “Raffaele Pettazzoni”)

Please send a one-page abstract (max 2.000 characters) to Igor Baglioni, the director of the museum, ( by April 1.

Attached to the abstract should be: the title of the paper; the chosen area; a short biography of the authors; email address and phone number.

Papers may be written and presented in English, French, Italian and Spanish.

The acceptance of papers will be communicated only to the selected contributors by 2016, April 10.

Please send the complete paper not later than June 1. The delivery of the paper is required to participate in the conference.

Important deadlines:

Closing for call for papers: April 1th, 2016.

Admission: April 10th, 2016.

Delivery of paper: June 1th, 2016.

Conference: june 14-15-16-17-18th, 2016

There is no attendance fee. The participants who don't live in Rome or surroundings will be accommodated in hotels and bed-and-breakfasts which have an agreement with the Museum of Religions Raffaele Pettazzoni to offer discounted prices.

Papers will be published on Religio. Collana di Studi del Museo delle Religioni “Raffaele Pettazzoni” (Edizioni Quasar), and in specialized journals. All the papers will be peer-reviewed.

The conference will be associated to the cultural event “Castelli Romani. Mito, Religioni e Tradizioni Eno-Gastronomiche” organized by the Fondazione “Museo delle Religioni Raffaele Pettazzoni”. The town of Albano Laziale, Ariccia, Artena, Castelgandolfo, Genzano, Lanuvio, Lariano, Monte Porzio Catone, Nemi, Rocca di Papa and Velletri also patronize the event.

The conference participants are offered the opportunity to visit each evening one of these towns and participate in the cultural activities organized in occasion of the cultural exhibition for free. The excursion programme will be presented at the same time as the conference programme.

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