The Apocalyptic Complex

Perspectives, Histories, Persistence
$111.00 / €95.00 / £90.00
Publication date: 
432 pages

The attack on the World Trade Center in 2001, followed by similarly dreadful acts of terror, prompted a new interest in the field of the apocalyptic. There is a steady output of literature on the subject (also referred to as “the End Times.) This book analyzes this continuously published literature and opens up a new perspective on these views of the apocalypse.

The thirteen essays in this volume focus on the dimensions, consequences and transformations of Apocalypticism. The authors explore the everyday relevance of the apocalyptic in contemporary society, culture, and politics, side by side with the various histories of apocalyptic ideas and movements. In particular, they seek to better understand the ways in which perceptions of the apocalypse diverge in the American, European, and Arab worlds. Leading experts in the field re-evaluate some of the traditional views on the apocalypse in light of recent political and cultural events, and, go beyond empirical facts to reconsider the potential of the apocalyptic. This last point is the focal point of the book.

Introduction: The Resilience of the Apocalyptic

Part I: Perspectives

Richard Landes: The Varieties of Millennial Experience
Klaus Vondung: Apocalyptic Violence
Charles B. Strozier and Katharine Boyd: The Psychology of Apocalypticism

Part II: The Middle Ages

Moshe Idel: The Chained Messiah: The Taming of the Apocalyptic Complex in Jewish Mystical Eschatology
Aziz Al-Azmeh: God’s Chronography and Dissipative Time
Brett Edward Whalen: Christendom, Crusade, and the End of Days: The Dream of World Conversion (1099–1274)
Petre Guran: From the Last Emperor to the Sleeping Emperor

Part III: Transformations

Michael Allen Gillespie: Radical Hopes: Apocalyptic Longing in Nineteenth Century Philosophy
Marina Cattaruzza: Political Religions, Apocalypticism, and the End of History: Some Considerations
David Marno: Eve’s Last Dream

Part IV: Persistence

Lilya Berezhnaya: Ukrainian Millennialism: A Historical Overview
György E. Szönyi: “His Dark Materials.” The Early Apocalypticism of Enoch Recycled in Modern and Postmodern Times
David Cook: Abu Musa‘b Al-Suri and Abu Musa‘b Al-Zarqawi: The Apocalyptic Theorist and the Apocalyptic Practitioner


Appendix I: László-Attila Hubbes: Elements of Online Apocalypticism
Appendix II: Select Bibliography for the Study of Apocalypticism (László-Attila Hubbes)