Call for Papers

The International Society for Folk Narrative Research (ISFNR) Committee on Charms, Charmers, and Charming invites submissions for its 2024 conference, which will be held at the Finnish Literature Society in Helsinki, Finland, from 12‐15 June, with an excursion on 15 June.

Submissions are due by 31st January 2024.

The conference will explore verbal rituals, whether written or spoken, that aim to change reality. Papers discussing this topic from any discipline, dealing with any region or historical period, are welcome.

Over the recent years, people all around the world have sadly suffered from a variety of crises and changes that have affected their daily lives, such as pandemics and epidemics, wars, the revolution of artificial intelligence, and the environmental crisis.

However, social and individual conflicts and crises have always been present in human life, and people have invented various ways to respond to them. Ritual behaviour and charms have traditionally been part of crisis management.

We therefore would like to welcome scholars to discuss this theme in a friendly, non-conflictual environment. Topics might include but are not limited to:

  • Transmission and circulation of charms during crises
  • Re-use of old charms and invention of new charms during crises
  • Changes in the performance of charms during crises
  • Conflicts and communication with supernatural agents
  • Conflicts within the community, between charmers and their environment
  • Changes in the media of charms: oral, written, digital, and other forms
  • Conflicting ideologies in the collecting and archiving of charms
  • Conflicts and debates within scholarship and changes of paradigms
  • Creating conflicts: witchcraft and maleficent charming

Proposals for 20‐minute papers should be sent to including a title, 200‐word abstract, and brief biography of the presenter. The language of the conference is English.

The conference will take place at the Finnish Literature Society as a face-to-face event, and we unfortunately cannot offer anyone to take part in the conference online. There will be no registration fee for the conference, but the conference dinner and the excursion will be chargeable.