Organised by Christian Meyer, project The Invention of the Modern Religious Bookshelf: Canons, Concepts and Communities, Research Area 3: „Future Perfect“. This event is part of the lecture
Organised by Christian Meyer, project The Invention of the Modern Religious Bookshelf: Canons, Concepts and Communities, Research Area 3: „Future Perfect“. This event is part of the lecture series The Invention of the Modern Religious Bookshelf.
Scholars across disciplines have scrutinised the historical contexts of the creation of canons and „corpora“ that many take for granted today. This process is still in its early stages in the study of what scholarship has identified as „esotericism.“ In fact, it is only recently that experts on esotericism have largely settled on an „Esoteric Corpus“ supposedly sedimented in eighteenth-century Masonic works and Protestant polemics. The lecture argues, however, that this corpus has been selectively identified on the basis of a preconceived nineteenth-century template that neglects the broader historical context, both synchronically and diachronically, reaching back to the sixteenth century. This context includes, in particular, early Orientalist studies, missionary work, and cultural exchange between Europe and Asia. By shedding new light on these sources, it is possible to gain insights not only into the subject of „esotericism“ per se, but also into the question of „religion“ within the framework of a global history of religion.
Freie Universität Berlin
Freie Universität BerlinHabelschwerdter Allee 45, 14195 Berlin