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Freemasonry: A Very Short Introduction

Andreas Önnerfors

August 2017

ISBN: 9780198796275

160 pages
Paperback
174x111mm

In Stock

Very Short Introductions

Price: £8.99

Freemasonry is one of the oldest and most widespread voluntary organizations in the world. Andreas Önnerfors sorts the facts from the colourful fictions surrounding this organization and outlines how the organization works, its rituals and symbols, its values, and the work it does in modern society.

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Description

Freemasonry is one of the oldest and most widespread voluntary organizations in the world. Andreas Önnerfors sorts the facts from the colourful fictions surrounding this organization and outlines how the organization works, its rituals and symbols, its values, and the work it does in modern society.

  • Introduces freemasonry, covering its three hundred year history and its position in our world today
  • Discusses the organization, secrecy, rituals and symbols of freemasonry
  • Unpacks the most common conspiracy myths and fictions surrounding freemasonry, and their history
  • Explains the most important concepts and lines of ideas that have shaped freemasonry and its distinct features
  • Sheds light on the participation of women in freemasonry
  • Part of the Very Short Introductions series - over eight million copies sold worldwide

About the Author(s)

Andreas Önnerfors, Associate Professor of the History of Sciences and Ideas, University of Gothenburg

Andreas Önnerfors is Associate Professor of the History of Sciences and Ideas at the University of Gothenburg. Prior to that he was Director of the Centre for Research into Freemasonry and Fraternalism at The University of Sheffield from 2007-2010. There, he published three academic volumes and launched the first academic journal in the area, the Journal for Research into Freemasonry and Fraternalism. He is a leading expert in freemasonry and has played a key part in the development of the research area during the last fifteen years. He has written several articles in peer reviewed journals and a chapters in edited books including a chapter on Illuminism in The Occult World (by Christopher Partridge ed, Routledge, 2015).

Table of Contents

    Introduction
    Three centuries of Freemasonry
    Historical legacies
    Enlightenment foundations
    From darkness to light
    Organizational culture
    Brotherhood challenged
    Perceptions, prejudices and persecutions
    Timeline
    References
    Further Reading
    Index

Reviews

"Well-written, interesting, and informative." - Jorge Luis Romeu, REHMLAC+. Revista de Historia de la Masonería

"An engrossing, lucid and authoritative interpretation of a social and cultural phenomenon which has been a source of widespread fascination for over 300 years. International in scope and packed with compelling vignettes, this book clearly and engagingly explains every aspect of freemasonry, including its origins, secret rituals, womens freemasonry and anti-masonic conspiracy theories." - Andrew Prescott, University of Glasgow

"Freemasonry has occupied a liminal place in modern historiography. Often approached by conspiracy theorists or true believers, it has finally been rescued by a new generation of scholars. This book offers the latest scholarship and a clear understanding of the historical significance of freemasonry as well as a careful treatment of its guild origins." - Margaret C. Jacob