Deutsch Intern
  • Extracts from magical texts in antiquity (Greek, Hieratic, Demotic, Akkadian): British Library P 122; British Museum P Chester Beatty 7 and P Leiden/London, British Museum BM 34065
DFG Centre for Advanced Studies MagEIA

Annual Focus Themes

Each year of the MagEIA Centre is dedicated to a broad focus theme (Annual Focus Theme). The focus themes foster the emergence of compatible fellow cohorts with a maximum potential for scholarly cross-fertilization and provide a common pivot for the work in RA1 "Texts" by addressing key areas of comparison between the different traditions of magical texts.

The Y1 theme, "Actors and Conceptualizations", is devoted to the participants of magical rituals and their roles within the ceremonies: We examine how evil and potential harm are imagined and presented as concrete actors, which (types of) deities and spirits are recruited to assist the ritual client, which roles are assigned to clients/patients, experts, and other participants, and how these roles reflect the overall understanding and conceptualization of magical rituals.

The Y2 theme, "Mechanics and Materials", will focus on how specific actions and gestures, artefacts and materials are used in the ritual context.

The Y3 theme, "Persuasion and Request", will move from dromena and deiknymena to the legomena as the third main component of any magical ritual by examining what linguistic patterns are used for specific purposes and contexts.

The Y4 topic, "Textualization and Transmission", will explore the relationship between magical practice and textual production. How are writing and script itself part of magical rituals and artefacts, which characteristics define the relationship between performative practice and ritual texts, and, last but not least, in which social contexts and with which motivations are ritual texts transmitted across generations and cultural boundaries?