World Conference on Fraternalism, Freemasonry, and History:
Research in Ritual, Secrecy, and Civil Society
The Bibliothèque Nationale- Paris, France
May 29-30, 2015
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Bibliotheque Nationale- Paris France
Convened by the journal Ritual, Secrecy, and Civil Society in cooperation with the Bibliothèque Nationale, the first World Conference on Fraternalism, Freemasonry, and History: Research in Ritual, Secrecy, and Civil Society, focuses on the study of ritual, secrecy, and civil society vis-à-vis the dynamics of Masonic scholarship around the world. The conference aims to explore how civil society, secrecy, and ritual have been important elements during different episodes of local and world histories, and indeed still are.
The conference will be held biennially in Paris, and hopes to open new doors while promoting multilingual and multicultural scholarship in areas such as, the relations between such Masonic-related subjects as the Companionnage, guilds, friendly societies, and Greek fraternities.
The call for papers is now open, and perspectives on and interpretations of all time periods and geographic zones are welcome. The standard length of individual presentations is planned to be between 15 and 20 minutes, further details will be administered nearer the start date. Paper and panel proposals should be submitted to Whitney Shepard, Registrar of the Conference, at Papers accepted for presentation will be published by Westphalia Press in three collections: Vital Masonic Scholarship in the 21st Century, New Research in Secret Societies, and European Scholarship in Secrecy and Ritualism. Additionally, some presentations will be made available for online streaming and video recorded through the American Public University System.

Conference Committee: Guillermo De Los Reyes (Conference Chair- University of Houston), Paul Rich (George Mason University), Daniel Guiterrez-Sandoval (Policy Studies Organization), Pierre Mollier (Editor, Ritual, Secrecy, and Civil Society), Maria Eugenia Vazquez-Semadeni (University of California, Los Angeles), Brent Morris (Scottish Rite Supreme Council), John Belton (Manchester Association of Masonic Research), Yasha Beresiner (InterCol London)

In order to make possible the attendance of all interested parties, the sponsors have agreed that there will be no registration fee for the 2015 conference. This owes much to the great support of the Bibliothèque Nationale in being such a generous host. One of the world’s extraordinary libraries with a remarkable Masonic collection, it is well worth exploring while you are in Paris. And although there is no cost, it is imperative that all attendees and participants still register, so that we may facilitate the proper arrangements and accomodations. Please note: the fee is only waived upon application to the Registrar of the Conference, Whitney Shepard. Early inquiry is appreciated in regards to special requests for hearing enhancement, physically challenged access, child care, or other potential needs of our guests.
There is a metro that adjoins the Library, for easy access to the conference. Complimentary coffee and refreshments will be provided throughout the day for our guests. Meals may be taken by delegates at any of the numerous nearby cafes and eateries. Although there will not be an official conference dinner on Saturday, arrangements will be made for delegates and their guests to join one of several informal groups to dine together that evening. Attendees will be able to sign up for a group upon registration. On Sunday there will be an optional informal walk, taking in the masonic and masonic related sites of the area. Details about this excursion will be forthcoming.
We hope to make everyone’s journey as smooth as possible, so please do not hesitate to contact us for further information or advice for travel and booking options. For those arriving early to the conference, here are a few visitor suggestions and local attractions that you may enjoy.
Below is a tentative schedule of events for the meeting:
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The Patron Saints and the Point Within the Circle
by Roy Mandell and Margaret Schmidt. Oil on canvas. 2014
Commissioned by John Mercer Lodge in Omaha Nebraska
Master of the lodge at the time: Brother David Long
  World Conference on Fraternalism, Freemasonry & History
Schedule of Events
Day One: Friday- May 29, 2015
9:00AM Coffee in the Foyer
9:30 AM Welcome– Grand Auditorium
Guillermo De los Reyes, Conference Chair
Jean-Loup Graton, Bibliotheque Nationale
Pierre Mollier, Editor- Ritual, Secrecy, and Civil Society
10:00 AM Keynote Address– Grand Auditorium
John Cooper, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of California, President of the North American Conference of Grand Masters- Into the Maelstrom: The Issue of Masonic Regularity, Past and Present
Commentator: Alain Bauer
Chair: Guillermo De Los Reyes
11:00 AM Special Instrumental Presentation
400 Years of Masonic Music- Special Instrumental Presentation
11:30-11:45 AM Coffee in the Foyer

11:45AM – 12:45 PM Masonic Bibliography, Individual Sessions
Salon One- John Belton, Problems in Masonic Bibliography
12:45 – 2:15 PM Break for Lunch
2:15 – 3:00 PM Plenary Address
Freemasonry and the Architecture of Paris
3:00 – 3:30 PM Dance Interpretation of the Initiation
3:30 – 3:45 PM Coffee in the Foyer
3:45- 4:45 PM Salon Breakout Sessions 
Day Two: Saturday- May 30, 2015
9:00 AM Coffee in Foyer
9:30 – 10:45 AM Plenary in Grand Auditorium
Jean-Michel Mathonière, Compagnonnage: Knowledge and Symbols of Knowledge Among Stone Cutters at the End of the Ancien Régime
10:45 – 12: 45 AM Salon Breakout Sessions
Salon One: Guillermo De Los Reyes and Paul Rich, Smuggling Masonic Books, Politics and Chaos in the Early Mexican Republic
Salon Two: Yasha Beresiner, Medieval Guilds of the City of London and their Later Influence on Freemasonry
12:45 – 2:30 PM Break for Lunch 
2:30 – 3:30 PM Plenary Session
Brent Morris, Henry Andrew Francken’s Manuscripts: The Ritual Cornerstone of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite
3:30 – 4:30 PM Salon Breakout Sessions
Salon One: John Acaster, The Voyage from Corruption to Harmony: Fresh Insights Into the Inspiration of Noah and ‘the primitive’ Within Freemasonry
Salon Two: Daniel Gutierrez-Sandoval, Publishing Masonic Books is not that Difficult: A Guide to New Realities 
Commentator: Rex Kallembach
4:30 PM Closing Plenary Session
Sunday- May 31, 2015
Informal walking tour of local masonic sites (details forthcoming)

Additional Details