Saturday, August 31, 2013

"Ireland's new religious movements" in paperback

Ireland's new religious movements, edited by Olivia Cosgrove, Laurence Cox, Carmen Kuhling and Peter Mulholland, is coming out in paperback this October (2013).

Full details, including review quotes, on the Cambridge Scholars site. A list of reviews is being maintained here, with links where possible.

Laurence Cox’s book “Buddhism and Ireland: from the Celts to the counter-culture and beyond” is now out. For more details see the Equinox site. Brian Bocking will launch the book in TCD on Thursday 26 September (7 pm) with a talk entitled “Forgotten but not gone: recognising Ireland’s Buddhist heritage in colonial Asia”. Full details here.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions conference

The inaugural conference of the Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions will be held in UCC on May 25 - 6, under the title "Emerging perspectives: religions and Ireland".

The conference programme and abstracts are now available here. It looks set to be very interesting as well as diverse in the range of interests represented.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Conference call "Emerging perspectives: religion and Ireland"

Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions

Founding conference “Emerging perspectives: religions and Ireland”
May 25-26 2012, UCC

We are pleased to invite scholars to take part in the first conference of the Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions (ISASR). The Conference will take place Fri-Sat May 25th - 26th, 2012 and is open to scholars of all disciplines that approach religions, both past and present, from a non-theological, critical, analytical and cross-cultural perspective. We invite papers from scholars working in Ireland on all aspects of religion both at home and globally, and from scholars worldwide who work on religions in Ireland or themes connected with Ireland. As this is the first conference of ISASR, paper proposals on any aspect of religion, both in Ireland and the wider world that contribute to Ireland’s engagement with the academic study of religions, will be considered.

Please send a 150-200 word abstract for papers to James Kapalo ( by closing date Friday March 2nd, 2012. Notification of abstract acceptance will be given by April 2nd, 2012.

The conference is being hosted by the Study of Religions Department, UCC.

The ISASR is a member association of the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR) and the European Association for the Study of Religions (EASR.)

Further information on the conference will be posted on the ISASR site in due course:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

"New agendas in social movement studies" conference

Conference announcement and call for papers

National University of Ireland Maynooth
November 26th 2011

Full details here
Papers discussing new religious movements under this rubric are welcome.

Deadline for abstracts: October 1st. Papers submitted by November 14th will be included in a CD-ROM for all participants and may be included in a subsequent publication.

Further details online as above or from

Laurence Cox

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Irish Research Network on Alternative Spiritualities and New Religious Movements (IRNAS)

This network, launched together with Ireland's new religious movements on March 30th 2011, brings together researchers at all stages of their careers who are objectively examining the field of alternative spiritualities and New Religious Movements in Ireland across academic disciplines. The network has been formed in response to the need evident for such an organisation following the “Alternative Spiritualities, the New Age and New Religious Movements in Ireland” interdisciplinary conference held at NUI Maynooth in 2009.

The aim of the network is to support each other, create networking opportunities and to provide expertise to the wider community. Over the coming year the network hopes to provide members with

  • Updates on upcoming conferences / calls for papers
  • List of member expertise for media contact / statutory body liaisons / educational work
  • Areas of interest in relation to postgraduate supervision
  • Annual seminar / workshops
  • Yearly online publication
  • Opportunities for members to seek research partners and share information

Being part of the network will allow members to be part of the broader community of researchers working in this area. Our mailing list will enable members to keep each other up to date on the latest funding, research, conference and publication opportunities in the area of alternative spiritualities and New Religious Movements. Our website will provide a public platform making the expertise of those members who choose to be listed available to statutory bodies, media contacts, educational requests and potential postgraduate students. This is a research network to advance understanding, provide information, to provide support and access to others in the research community rather than a place to debate the truth or religious value of particular religious beliefs or practices.

To join please contact Olivia Cosgrove, giving the following details:

  • Full name and title
  • Institutional affiliation (if any) and email address
  • Area(s) of research interest
  • Are you willing for your details to be included in the online list of member expertise?
  • If so, are you in a position to supervise postgraduate students?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Book reviews: Ireland's new religious movements

This page updated as new reviews and comments appear.

Review by Ian Forest-Jones in Australian Religious Studies Review 25/2 (2013), pp. 318-9, online here.

Review by Dominique Beth Wilson in Journal of Religious History 37/1 (2013), pp. 138-9, online here.

Review by Liselotte Frisk in Nova Religio: The Journal of Alternative and Emergent Religions 16/3 (2013), pp. 110-111

"The Personal, the Political, and the Spiritual: Still Sorting It Out After All These Years," by Mary Farrell Bednarowski (reviewing Ciara O'Connor's chapter for this book and other feminist writers), Feminist collections 33/4 (fall 2012).

Review by Mikael Rothstein in Numen: international review for the history of religions 59/4 (2012), pp. 424-5

Review by Alex Norman in International Journal for the Study of New Religions 3/1 (2012), pp. 123-5), online here.

A briefer mention in Blogtrotter by author John L Murphy (DeVry University).

Review by Eamon Maher in Estudios Irlandeses vol. 7 (2012), pp. 190 - 2, online here.

Review by James Kapaló in Irish Journal of Sociology vol. 19 no. 2 (2011), pp. 188-9, first page online here.

Comments on Attracta Brownlee's research, including her chapter for this book, in New Hibernia Review 15/2 (Summer 2011), pp. 6-7.

Review by Richard Cimino in Religion Watch 26/3 (Mar-Apr 2011), p. 10.

Gladys Ganiel, TCD / Irish School of Ecumenics, reviews the book in her blog.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Marion Bowman to launch "Ireland's New Religious Movements", March 30th

Marion Bowman will launch the just-published Ireland's New Religious Movements with a talk on "Contemporary Celticity" in Dublin on Wednesday, March 30th.

Dr Bowman is Senior Lecturer and Head of Dept. of Religious Studies at the Open University and a leading researcher on contemporary paganism, Celtic spirituality, the New Age, folk religion, place and tradition. More details on her work are available at

The book launch is at 6.30 pm on Wed. March 30th in the Gutter Bookshop ("We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars"), Cow's Lane, Temple Bar, Dublin 8 (opposite Lord Edward St.) Admission is free and refreshments will be provided. For more information on the event, please contact Ciara at 086 3678501.

The event will also see the launch of an Irish research network on alternative spiritualities, the New Age and new religious movements (contact: olivia.cosgrove AT

Further details of the book here.