Dr Angela Voss
Honorary University Fellow
For further information about Dr Voss and her publications please see www.angelavoss.org
Dr Angela Voss is a faculty member of EXESESO at the University of Exeter. She worked as a musician before studying for an MA in Music Performance at the City University, London, where she went on to complete in 1992 a PhD on the astrological music therapy of the Renaissance philosopher Marsilio Ficino. For over ten years she taught at the University of Kent, Canterbury, directing an MA in the Cultural Study of Cosmology and Divination. She is currently a member of the Community Arts and Education faculty at Canterbury Christ Church University.
Dr Voss has written extensively on Renaissance astrology and music, including an edited volume of Ficino's writings (Marsilio Ficino, North Atlantic Books, 2006), two co-edited volumes of conference proceedings, The Imaginal Cosmos (University of Kent, 2007) and Seeing with Different Eyes (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008) with a third in preparation (Daimonic Imagination: Uncanny Intelligence, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2012/13). Her research interests centre on the role of the symbolic imagination in the Western esoteric traditions, particularly neoplatonism, and its relationship to divinatory systems such as astrology and tarot, as well as the "paranormal" in general. She is particularly interested in building bridges between theoretical and practical, critical and experiential models of academic research, and in broadening epistemological approaches to the study of esotericism which engage both creative imagination and participatory reflection.
Dr Voss teaches the module HISM152 for the MA in Western Esotericism, 'Alexandrian Hermeticism, Neoplatonism and Astrology'.
History of the imagination; symbolism and symbolic interpretation; Renaissance astrology and magic; neoplatonism and esotericism; contemporary practices in spiritualism and divination; after death experience; the daimon; alternative epistemologies; spiritual cognition; creative and imaginal research methods.
Dr Angela Voss
Publications and Conference Papers
- ‘ Ficino and Astrology’ in Astrology: the Astrologers’ Quarterly vol.60 (1986) no. 3, :126-38; no. 4, 191-99
- ‘The Renaissance Musician: Speculations on the Performing Style of Marsilio Ficino’ in Temenos 11 (1990), 31-52
- Review of Performance: Revealing the Orpheus Within by Anthony Rooley (Shaftesbury 1990) in Early Music vol. XIX no.3 (1991), 451-3
- ‘The Natural Magic of Marsilio Ficino’ in Historical Dance vol. 3 no.1 (1991) 25-30
- Review of Ficino, Three Books on Life eds. C. Kaske & J. Clark in Aries vols. 12-13 (1992), 68-73
- ‘On the Knowledge of Divine Things: Ficino’s concept of notio; Divinatory versus ‘Scientific’ Astrology’ in Sphinx: A Journal for Archetypal Psychology and the Arts vol.6 (1994), 149-72
- Review of Gary Tomlinson, Music in Renaissance Magic in 'Music and Letters' vol. 75 no 4 (nov. 1994) 592-94
- ‘The Book of the Sun’ by Marsilio Ficino, translated by G. Cornelius, D. Costello, G. Tobyn, A. Voss and V. Wells in Sphinx vol. 6, 124-48
- ‘The Music of the Spheres; Marsilio Ficino and Renaissance Harmonia’ in Culture and Cosmos vol.2 no.2 (1998), 16-38
- ‘Marsilio Ficino, the Second Orpheus’ in Music as Medicine, The History of Music Therapy since Antiquity ed. P. Horden (Ashgate, 2000), 154-72
- ‘The Astrology of Marsilio Ficino, Divination or Science? ’ in Culture and Cosmos vol. 4 no.2 (2000), 29-45
- ‘Orpheus redivivus: The Musical Magic of Marsilio Ficino’ in Marsilio Ficino, his Theology, his Philosophy, his Legacy (Leiden: Brill, 2002) 227-41
- ‘Father Time and Orpheus’ (Oxford: Abzu Press, 2003)
- ‘From Allegory to Anagoge; the question of symbolic perception in a literal world’ in Astrology and the Academy eds. N. Campion & P. Curry (Bristol: Cinnabar Books 2004)
- ‘The Secret Life of Statues’ in Sky and Psyche eds. N. Campion & P. Curry (Edinburgh: Floris Books 2006)
- Marsilio Ficino ‘Esoteric Masters’ series, ed. Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke (Berkeley, California: North Atlantic Books, 2006)
- The Imaginal Cosmos, Astrology, Divination and the Sacred editor, with Jean Hinson Lall (Canterbury: University of Kent, 2007)
- 'Eros', Kosmos Osterreich no. 23 (Berlin, 2007)
- 'Father Time and Orpheus' in The Imaginal Cosmos (see above)
- Seeing with Different Eyes: Essays in Astrology and Divination editor, with Patrick Curry (Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008)
- 'Divination and Divine Tears: the Power of a Melancholy Humour' in Seeing with Different Eyes (see above)
- ‘ A Methodology of the Imagination’Eye of the Heart Journal , vol.3, (La Trobe University, 2009)
- ‘Divination as Divine Revelation: some thoughts on Ibn Arabi’s understanding of Imagination (Tarosophy Journal, vol. 7, 2010)
- 'Life between Lives Therapy: a ritual initiation for modern times?’ in Divination for the New Millenium ed. Patrick Curry (Ashgate, 2010)
- ‘God or the Daemon? Platonic Astrology in a Christian Cosmos’ (Temenos Review 14, 2011)
- ‘A Matter of Spirit’, Paranthropology online journal, July 2011
Recent unpublished reviews and conference papers
- ‘Becoming an Angel: the mundus imaginalis of Henry Corbin and the Platonic Path of Self-Knowledge (presented at ‘Aristotle and Plato’ conference, Jupiter Trust, November 2007)
- ‘How Real is the Real Astrology?’ (unpublished review of John Frawley, The Real Astrology)
- Review of Nicholas Campion, The Dawn of Astrology
- ‘“Diligence and Divine Chance”: the components of Marsilio Ficino’s astral magic in De vita coelitus comparanda’, in From Masha’alla to Kepler: the Theory and Practice of Astrology in the Middle Ages and Renaissance eds. C. Burnett and D. Greenbaum (London: Warburg Institute, forthcoming 2010)
- ‘Music, Magic and Healing’ (provisional title), in The Cambridge Companion to 16th Century Music (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2013)
- ‘Making Sense of the Paranormal’ (chapter for book on methodology of the paranormal, forthcoming, eds. O. Jensen and S. Munt, Ashgate)
- ‘Fireflies and Shooting Stars: Visual Narratives of Daimonic Intelligence’ in Daimonic Imagination: Uncanny Intelligence (Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, forthcoming 2012/13)
- Thomas Lupo, Consort Music, The English Fantasy Consort of Viols, (ASV, 1996)
- Secrets of the Heavens with Mark Rylance, Mark Tucker, Catherine King and the Marini Consort (Riverrun Records 2001)
- Images of Melancholy with John Line, Lynda Sayce, Andrew Wilson-Dickson and the Marini Consort (Riverrun Records 2003)
I am currently an Honorary Lecturer for the MA in Western Esotericism at EXESESO, an Associate Lecturer in Religious Studies at the University of Kent, and a part time lecturer for the Community Arts and Education faculty at Canterbury Christ Church University.
For ten years I devised and taught undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the Study of Mysticism and Religious Experience and the Cultural Study of Cosmology and Divination at Kent, directing an MA from 2006-2010.I completed my first degree in Combined Arts at the University of Leicester, followed by a Diploma in Early Music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. After working for several years as both a professional musician and administrator (for Anthony Rooley and the Consort of Musicke), I studied for an MA in Music Performance Studies at the City University, London. By this time I had been introduced to the writing of the Renaissance philosopher and astrologer, Marsilio Ficino, and had become thoroughly immersed in the world of 15th century music and occult philosophy. I therefore decided to embark on a Ph.D. to explore the generally misunderstood astrological practice of Ficino, this was completed in 1992 as 'Music, Astrology and Magic: the astrological music therapy of Marsilio Ficino and his role as a Renaissance Magus'. As a practising astrologer and musician myself, I consider it vital to understand the phenomenology of practice as a basis for study, and this has continued to inform my research and teaching. A highpoint of my career was the devising and making of a CD, Secrets of the Heavens, an imaginative reconstruction of Ficino's magical Orphic Singing.
The MA in the Cultural Study of Cosmology and Divination was established due to the generous sponsorship of the Sophia Trust, and has focussed on divinatory theory and practice, symbolic interpretation, the function of the imagination as a mode of knowledge and traditional cosmology. I have published numerous papers on Ficino, as well as an edited collection of his astrological writings for North Atlantic Books, Western Esoteric Masters series. I am now moving into the territory of symbolism and the imaginal, exploring the erotic life of statues, Life between lives and past-life therapy, ancient Greek mysteries and the metaphysics of divination. I live with my two teenage sons near Canterbury, and when not occupied with my work I am learning to be a jazz and rock drummer.