Posts Tagged ‘Magic’


CFP: Magic and the Supernatural in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods

April 10, 2015

Cardiff University Postgraduate Conference, July 21st 2015

An understanding of magic and the supernatural is crucial to the study of the medieval and early modern periods. Magic was a part of everyday life, ingrained into the cultural world view and popular imagination. It was also elusive, encompassing a plurality of meanings and forms that permeated every level of society and resulted in a wide range of practices, from those based on folkloric beliefs to quasi-religious rituals. As a means of understanding and attempting to control the social, spiritual, and natural world, it could be both a comfort and a threat to established norms.

We welcome papers exploring the significance of magic and the supernatural to medieval and early modern thought.

Suggested topics include but are not limited to:

  • Magic and religion
  • Magic and science
  • Attitudes towards magic and the supernatural
  • Science fiction and fantasy
  • Alchemy
  • Ritual magic
  • The psychology of magic
  • Magic and technology
  • Magicians and cunning folk
  • Astrology
  • Angels and demons
  • Ghosts and apparitions
  • Witchcraft
  • Medicine and anatomy
  • Shape-shifting
  • Supernatural creatures
  • Otherworlds
  • Prophecy and dreams
  • Necromancy and conjuring

We welcome abstracts from postgraduate students and early career researchers on all aspects of this topic in medieval and early modern history, literature, art, archaeology, architecture, and music.

Please send abstracts of 200-300 words to for papers no longer than 20 minutes by Monday 25th May, 2015.

Find out more here:

In addition to panels, the conference will feature keynote addresses from Professor Ronald Hutton from the University of Bristol and Dr. Darren Oldridge from the University of Worcester.


Folklore and Magic in the Age of Shakespeare

November 3, 2011

Cardiff University’s Centre for Life Long Learning to offer new course:


Beliefs about magic and folklore were an integral part of Shakespearean drams and the plays of his contemporaries. This course examines the cultural background of these beliefs and the contexts in which they arose and how they enhance our understanding of Shakespeare’s world.

This course aims to provide students with knowledge and understanding of issues relating to beliefs and motifs incorporated into British dramas in the 16th and 17th centuries, together with a context for the relevant historical debates regarding these topics.

Syllabus content to include:

  • Shakespeare’s World: Magic and History
  • Plants and Folk Medicine in Shakespeare’s Plays
  • Fairy Lore
  • Night’s Black Agents: Witchcraft in the Age of Shakespeare
  • Magicians and Philosophers: The role of Ritual Magic
  • Magicians Real and Imagined: John Dee from Bloody Mary to James I
  • The Story of Faust: Marlowe and chapbooks
  • Spirits from the Vasty Deep: Shakespeare and Welsh magic.
  • The Poisoners Handbook: Elizabethan and Jacobean Blood Tragedies.
  • The Vexed Bermoothes – Exotic travel and the Otherworld

Course Information

Folklore and Magic in the Age of Shakespeare
Dr Juliette Wood
FOL11A4667A– Enrol
10 Credits
Level 1
10 weekly meetings
Thursdays from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
£102.00 (Concessionary Fee £82.00)
Cardiff Centre for Lifelong Learning
Senghennydd Road
CF24 4AG
Tel: 029 2087 0000
Fax: 029 2066 8935
Find out more here
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