Note from the Editors » ISHS: International Society for Heresy Studies



Note from the Editors

Heresy Studies at the University of London Senate House

Heresy Studies at the University of London Senate House

“We are all from the same tribe,” Taraneh Wilkinson begins in her delightful reflection on the Third Conference of the International Society for Heresy Studies. But a moment later, she asks the inevitable question, “How can we all be heretics?” How, indeed?

Of course, not everyone who is a member of the ISHS community would embrace the title of “heretic,” but a large proportion of our membership seemed pretty comfortable laying claim to it at the conference—and certainly everyone was content to be surrounded by heretics. As at all of our previous conferences, this one was a pleasure, a highly collegial affair and, if the reflections in this issue are any indication, a highly productive one.

exCommunicated usually publishes essays on a range of academic, artistic, and political subjects. But sometimes it’s worthwhile to take some time and simply reflect on what we do and who we are. That’s the purpose of this issue of exCommunicated. All of the short essays in this issue were written by conference attendees reflecting on what the conference and their participation in it meant to them. That’s not to say that the essays aren’t incisive, however; to the contrary, these essays demonstrate how valuable insights bubble up out of the strange alchemy of our society, whether it be on the challenges facing freedom of speech and freedom of movement in contemporary society, on the pleasures of liminal spaces and the joys of scholarship, on the implicit normativity of academic disciplines and the value of violating disciplinary boundaries, or on the complications arising out of the very idea of a society of heretics.

ISHS wishes to thank our collaborators in this conference, the Queen Mary Centre for the Study of Literature and Religion and the Institute for English Studies at Senate House, London, as well as NYU London for hosting our opening reception.

To all of our members, whether they attended the London conference or not: we hope to see you at the Fourth Conference of the International Society for Heresy Studies in 2020.

One of the tribe,
Geremy Carnes
Co-Editor, exCommunicated



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