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Sacrality and Space

Sacrality and Space

This working group will be devoted to the comparative and interdisciplinary study of sacrality and space: connections of sacrality to space, place and location; the historical development and cultural significance of sacred spaces; their social functions and cultural uses; the acts of separation and signification necessary to ensure their sacrality; the interdependence of ritual and sacred location; sacralizations and profanations; the correspondences between sacred places, sacred people, and sacred practices; liminality and heterotopic aspects of sacred spaces; the role of art, scripture, and narrative in sacralization and sacrality, and more.

In the fall term we will discuss precirculated classic texts on sacrality and space from a variety of fields including religious anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, and the history of religion. In the spring term, we will explore new avenues in approaching sacrality and space: we plan to pair theory readings with presentations of case studies and relevant work in progress.  We will also host a guest speaker early in 2013 and conduct a half-day workshop in connection with the visit.

Lead:  Markus Stock, German


Suzanne Akbari, Medieval Studies and English
Jennifer Harris, Religion
Ethan Matt Kavaler, Art
Jennifer Purtle, Art and East Asian Studies
Prasad Bidaye, English, Humber College


Guita Lamsechi, Art
Christopher L. Miller, Medieval Studies
Abraham Plunkett-Latimer, History
Johanna Rodda, Medieval Studies
Brys Stafford, Spanish & Portuguese
Nicola Vohringer, German
Ann Wesson Garau, Medieval Studies

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