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"The Bridegroom Cometh!": Prophets and Prophecy in the Long Eighteenth Century

This interdisciplinary conference aims to provide an opportunity for scholars to re-evaluate the role of prophets and prophecy in the long eighteenth century. Some major figures are well known (Jane Lead, William Blake, Richard Brothers, and Joanna Southcott), but others are still emerging (Dorothy Gott, Samuel Spavold, Samuel Best - a.k.a. 'Poor Help'). Perhaps their most immediate point of interest today arises from their blend of religious appropriation, personal charisma and propensity to gather bands of dedicated followers through their personal interactions and spiritual interpretations as circulated in their writings. While individual prophets are distinctive, their collective works and ministries present some of the most visible ways in which religion impacted on contemporary social groups, such as through publicity, self-promotion, authorship, publication, scriptural authority, visual and material cultural, and patronage.

The conference invites proposals for 20 minute papers (300 words
abstracts) on issues such as (but not confined to):

* Enthusiasm and enlightenment
* Role of personal charisma
* Gender and prophecy
* Prophecy and prophetic traditions
* Scriptural sources and prophecy
* Prophetic diversity
* The management, mechanics and economics of prophetic movements
* Prophecy and oral/print/visual culture
* Visionary processes
* Prophecy and class
* Communicating the esoteric
* Prophetic afterlives
* Prophecy and the body
* Prophecy and dissent
* Prophetic language/linguistics.

The "Bridegroom Cometh!" conference is an activity within the Dorothy Gott project based at NTU and supported by the Panacea Society.

Please send 300 word abstracts to nancy.cho@ntu.ac.uk and/or david.worrall@ntu.ac.uk by 31 March 2009.