Astrology and the Renaissance World View

To the Renaissance mind, astrology was an intrinsic part of everyday life. The stars govern over herbs and medicines, politics, personal wins and tragedies and can even determine the future in Renaissance texts. Consultation of the stars was a regular feature of an essential Renaissance education. Elizabeth I was herself educated in the astrological arts by her own court astrologer. We are currently experiencing a renewed interest in astrology in our current cultural zeitgeist. Astrology has taken over the popular imagination and is once again enjoying a boom in interested parties from spiritual and wellness spaces to the tech world of crypto. In many ways, the resurgence in astrological interest mirrors that of the 16th century, with current astrologers using the stars to document political, ecological and financial trends . Using texts and sources spanning across literature, drama and contemporary politics, in this talk we explore the importance of Astrology to the Renaissance World View and what implications it may have for our own renewed interest in astrology.

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Jordana Belaiche is a writer, director and dramaturg based in London. Her work centres on class and gender, she has a love of folklore, witchcraft and the occult and is well versed in all things uncanny. She is the author of two full length plays and several short stories.

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