Convenors & Speakers


Hjördis Becker-Lindenthal (University of Cambridge, UK)

Simone Kotva (University of Oslo, Norway)

Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe (University of Cambridge, UK)



Insurrection Interviews I Podcast, Dec 2020

David Abram (Creative Director of the Alliance for Wild Ethics, USA) 

David Abram is a cultural ecologist, philosopher and sleight-of-hand magician whose influential work, The Spell of the Sensuous: Language and Perception in a More-than-human World (1997), demonstrated the parallels between animism and eco-phenomenology and brought non-Western ontologies into dialogue with Western metaphysics. Abram is especially interested in language and has done important work on the ethics of speech and how it relates to the environment of things named. Abram holds a Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and is Founder and Creative Director of the Alliance for Wild Ethics:

Adam Bobbette (University of New South Wales, Australia)

Adam Bobbette completed his Ph.D. at the University of Cambridge and is currently a research fellow at the University of New South Wales, Sydney, where he is writing a book on the political geology of Indonesia since 1945. His doctoral field work included a case study of Mt. Merapi, Indonesia, an active, populous volcano, where Bobbette undertook an ethnography and comparative cultural history of shamanism and volcano scientists: Bobbette compared their technologies and practices of forecasting, institutions, and networks, and the ways that telling stories of the volcano and its future are ways of defining what it means to be human. Bobbette’s writing has appeared in Cabinet , N+1 , the Times Literary Supplement , as well as scholarly journals and edited books.

Erik Davis (Independent scholar, USA)

Erik Davis is America’s leading scholar of high strangeness and the author of several books on occulture: High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experiences in the Seventies (MIT, 2019); Nomad Codes: Adventures in modern Esoterica (Yeto, 2010); The Visionary State: A Journey through California’s Spiritual Landscapes (Chronicle, 2006). His first and best-known book is TechGnosis: Myth, Magic, and Mysticism in the Age of Information (Crown, 1998), a cult classic of visionary media studies that has been translated into five languages. Davis received his Ph.D. from Rice University. 

Siddharth Pandey (Independent scholar, India)

Siddharth Pandey is a literary critic and historian who works on enchantment, emplacement and the ethics of making; he is also a landscape photographer and curator, and has worked with numerous galleries and museums in India and the UK, including the Victoria and Albert in London and the Oriental Museum in Durham. Siddharth received his MPhil from the University of Delhi and in 2019 he was awarded his doctorate from the University of Cambridge with a dissertation on Crafting, Conjuring, and the Aesthetic of Making: Towards a Materialistic Understanding of Fantasy.

Charlotte Rodgers (Independent artist and author, UK)

Charlotte Rodgers is a UK-based artist and author who works with remnants of the dead and the discarded to create talismanic and totemic art. Her work has been exhibited internationally, at galleries in the UK and US. Charlotte also gives talks and has collaborated in numerous workshops, and is the author of The Sky is a Gateway, Not a Ceiling: Blood, Sex, Death, Magick and Transformation (2014), and The Bloody Sacrifice: A Personal Experience of Contemporary Blood Rites (2011), which chronicles her use of road kill and blood in art, ritualized scarification, tattoo work and magic. Charlotte’s art is exhibited virtually as part of the Magic and Ecology project, and is also featured on the Magic and Ecology website. 

Isabelle Stengers (Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium)

Stengers is Professor of Philosophy at the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium. An internationally acclaimed philosopher and cultural theorist, Stengers is the coauthor, with Philippe Pignarre, of Capitalist Sorcery: Breaking the Spell (Eng. trans. 2011), which engages the earth-based spirituality of Starhawk’s witchcraft to show how the concept and person of the witch, as one who herself is capable of enchantment, wields a similar power to the capitalism that feeds ecological crisis and is thus uniquely placed to resist it. Magic as critique is a theme Stengers explores in subsequent publications, for instance “Reclaiming Animism,” E-flux 26 (2012): 1-10, which also engages with David Abram’s work, and Another Science Is Possible: Manifesto for a Slow Science (Eng. trans. 2018).

Alice Tarbuck (Academic and author, Queen Margaret University)

Alice Tarbuck is an academic, writer and literature professional based in Edinburgh. Alice was the 2019 Scottish Book Trust New Writers Awardee for poetry, and their debut, A Spell in the Wild: a year (and six centuries) of Magic is published by Two Roads (Hachette). Their first poetry pamphlet, Grid, was published by Sad Press in 2018. Alice has appeared at StAnza, Belfast Literary Festival, Literary Dundee, and the Scottish PEN International Women’s Day Symposium, amongst others. Their work has been published by 404 Ink, 3ofCups Press, PN Review, Antiphon, Zarf and many others.

Online seminars  I Podcast & Live Q&A, Jan-April 2021

David Abram (Creative Director of the Alliance for Wild Ethics, USA) 

David Abram is a cultural ecologist, philosopher and sleight-of-hand magician whose influential work, The Spell of the Sensuous: Language and Perception in a More-than-human World (1997), demonstrated the parallels between animism and eco-phenomenology and brought non-Western ontologies into dialogue with Western metaphysics. Abram is especially interested in language and has done important work on the ethics of speech and how it relates to the environment of things named. Abram holds a Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and is Founder and Creative Director of the Alliance for Wild Ethics:

Alexander Cummins (Independent scholar, USA)

Alexander Cummins is an historian, poet, and consultant whose practice centres around religion, philosophy, medicine and magic. He is the author of The Starry Rubric: Seventeenth-century English Astrology and Magic (2012), which explores the history of magical approaches to the emotions: from mapping personality with astrology, to managing emotionality with herbs and amulets, to the manipulations of aphrodisiacs, the evil eye, and the conjuration of spirits. He also has a special interest in geomancy and the history and practice of seeking conversation with non-human spirit-entities through the aid of interpreting the non-human environment. Cummins writes for both academic and esoteric publishers and facilitates a range of workshops and lectures series:

Lilith Dorsey (Author and artist, USA)

Lilith Dorsey is an author, speaker and magical practitioner. Their first initiation came from Mambo Bonnie Devlin, and their academic work has focussed on ritual dance and possession on film. Lilith edits Oshun-African Magickal Quarterly, and is the creator of the critically acclaimed experimental documentary Bodies of Water: Voodoo Identity and Tranceformation. Lilith is the author of numerous books, including Voodoo and Afro-Caribbean Paganism (2005), Water Magic (2020) and Orishas, Goddesses, and Voodoo Queens: The Divine Feminine in the African Religious Traditions (2020). Their work has been featured in the New York Times and the Village Voice. Lilith was also choreographer for jazz legend Dr. John’s “Night Tripper” Voodoo Show. In July 2013, they led her first ever Voodoo Zombie Silent Rave, complete with very confused Thriller flash mob. Lilith posts about their work on

Esther Eidinow (University of Bristol, UK)

Esther Eidinow is Professor in Ancient History at the University of Bristol. Her expertise is ancient Greek society and culture, with specific focus on ancient Greek religion and magic. She has published monographs on oracles, curse tablets and binding spells, concepts of fate, luck and fortune, and the social emotions surrounding ‘witchcraft’ trials in classical Athens. Eidonow takes an interdisciplinary approach to research, employing cognitive and anthropological theories to investigate ancient evidence, with particular interest in questions about social emotions, the concept of the individual and ideas of the self, network theory, and the socio-cultural power of narrative. She is currently working on projects exploring narratives and environmental risk; myth and landscape; the idea of ‘belief’; and concepts of change in the ancient world.

Peter Grey (Scarlet Imprint, UK)

Peter Grey is a writer and co-founder, with Alkistis Dimech, of the publishing house Scarlet Imprint. He is the author of the controversial Apocalyptic Witchcraft (2013), a unique interpretation of modern witchcraft which places it in the context of the Sabbat and in a landscape suffering climate and ecological collapse. His latest work is Lucifer: Princeps (2015), a study of the origins of the figure of Lucifer. His work has also appeared in numerous small journals and collections, such as The Fenris Wolf, as well as online:  

Geraldine Hudson (Goldsmiths, UK)

Geraldine is an interdisciplinary British artist and curator based between Stockholm and London. Within her own practice Geraldine is participating specifically at the intersections of site, myth, psychological topography, otherness and the liminal experience of the magickal body. Drawing from initial psychogeographic work started in 2005 where she was working with archetypes of the wild, sexuality and transgression in relation to carnival/ritual , place and event, Geraldine’s practice has gradually evolved to acknowledge her own relationship to esoteric and lost knowledges. As experiential research rather than anthropological study, she wishes to question notions of consensus reality, in turn blurring the lines between fact and fiction, through a phenomenology of animism and cosmological accordance. She is currently studying the MFA Fine Art at Goldsmiths, where she is constructing work around new mythologies and ideas of communal ritual as a conduit for reacquaintance with land, place and ecological kin. As a curator she has organised various events in Sweden, most notably the Conjuring Creativity – Art & the Esoteric  biennial. Geraldine’s website is:

Richard Irvine (St Andrews University, UK)

Richard Irvine is Lecturer in Social Anthropology at St Andrews University. An anthropologist with a special interest in ecology and magic, he works across three ethnographic fieldsites: Orkney and East Anglia in the UK, and Tuv aimag in Mongolia, and his interests span environmental change and religious life. He has published widely on the Anthropocene, spiritual practice and deep time, and is the author of numerous articles, including: “Anthropocene East Anglia,” Sociological Review 65 (2017): 154-170; “Seeing Environmental Violence in Deep Time: Perspectives from Contemporary Mongolian Literature and Music,” Environmental Humanities 10 (2018): 257-272; with T. Kyriakides, “Just out of Reach: An Ethnographic Theory of Magic and Rationalisation,” Implicit Religion 21 (2019): 202-222.

Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe (University of Cambridge, UK)

Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe is Lecturer in Patristics at the University of Cambridge, Faculty of Divinity. Her research centres on the life and thought of the church in a “long” late antiquity (from the second to sixth centuries CE) in the Greco-Roman Mediterranean and further afield, especially in the Syriac-speaking world. Her PhD was on the political theology of Ambrosiaster, an anonymous Christian writer of the later fourth century. Her current major project is on late ancient ideas of the devil and demons, concentrating on notions of diabolical agency. She also has long-standing interests in patristic biblical exegesis, political thought, the history of liturgy, inter-religious relations in late antiquity, and magical texts and objects.

Lupa (Independent artist and author, USA)

Lupa is a writer, artist and magical practitioner based in Portland, Oregon (USA). They use three-dimensional sculptures as statements on the problems we face, pairing aesthetic attraction with harsh realities. But they also invite others to seek solutions, offering relationships with sacred artefacts and the transformational rites they may incite in one’s life. Lupa draws on the tradition of the Wunderkammer, the cabinet of natural curiosities that serves as a personal museum, to encourage people to bring reminders of the nonhuman world even into their very homes. Lupa is the author and editor of several books on the ecology of magic, including Fang and Fur, Blood and Bone: A Primal Guide to Animal Magic (2006), Talking about the Elephant: An Anthology of Neopagan Perspectives on Cultural Appropriation (2008), and Nature Spirituality from the Ground Up: Connect with Totems in your Ecosystem (2016). Lupa posts regularly about their work on  

Josephine McCarthy (Quareia Publishing, UK)

Josephine McCarthy is an esoteric practitioner, teacher and author of 26 books on the theory and practice of western magic, and four fiction works on similar themes. Her work has particular emphasis on the magician’s relationship with the land and environment, and the magical analysis of New Kingdom Egyptian Funerary texts in exploration of the living use of such texts, with the concept of the deities as forces of nature. She is also the author of Quareia – an extensive in-depth open source training course in the theory, practice and history of western magic that moves magical practice into deeper cooperative relationships with nature: Josephine also blogs at:

Zakiya McKenzie (Independent artist and author, UK)

Zakiya Mckenzie is a Bristol-based writer and researcher. She was the 2019 writer-in-residence for Forestry England and 2017 Bristol Black and Green Ambassador. In 2017, she completed a Master of Research degree in Sustainable Futures at the University of Bristol focusing on the environmental and economic implications of “black gold” – petroleum – off Guyana’s shore. She is currently writing for a PhD at the University of Exeter researching Black British journalism in the post-war period. Zakiya is also a volunteer at Ujima 98FM community radio station in Bristol and she regularly leads naturebased art and writing workshops, including one on Caribbean storytelling for children. Zakiya has appeared on Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, Farming Today, Inside Out West and has written for Smallwoods and BBC Wildlife Magazines. Follow Zakiya’s work at

Sabrina Scott (York University, Toronto, Canada)

Sabrina Scott is a doctoral student in Science and Technology Studies at York University, Toronto. Their MA dissertation, WITCHBODY: a rambling and poetic autoethnography of western occult magic as a pathway for environmental learning and advocacy (2018, 2nd ed.), won the 2016 LGBT Youthline Outstanding Achievements in Post-Secondary Academic Environment Award. Scott views magic as a way of building relationship with non-human beings: you, me, plants, trees, coffee cups and garbage bins. Their forthcoming Curse & Cure (2022) is a guide to working with magic and witchcraft in the real world. Scott maintains a professional design and illustration practice using comics, illustrations, zines, and book arts to work through critical theory, philosophy, ethics, spirituality, sensation and social justice: /

Merlin Sheldrake (Independent scholar and author, UK)

Merlin Sheldrake is a biologist and author of Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds, and Shape Our Futures. He received a Ph.D. in tropical ecology from Cambridge University for his work on underground fungal networks in tropical forests in Panama, where he was a predoctoral research fellow of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. Merlin’s is a keen brewer and fermenter, and is fascinated by the relationships that arise between humans and more-than-human organisms. Find out more at

Victoria Whitworth (Independent scholar and author, UK) 

Victoria is a novelist and academic who explores the culture and society of Britain in the Early Middle Ages, focusing on death, burial and memory. From 2012 to 2016 she was lecturer at the Centre for Nordic Studies on the Orkney campus of the University of the Highlands and Islands. She is the author of Dying and Death in Later Anglo-Saxon England (as Victoria Thompson); the novels The Bone Thief and The Traitors’ Pit (as VM Whitworth) and Daughter of the Wolf, all set in England’s Dark Ages. Her latest book, Swimming with Seals, is both an acclaimed memoir of life, death and swimming, and a treasure trove of the history, myth and archaeology of Orkney. Victoria lives with her daughter in Edinburgh.