An Atypical Base-community

Research Findings and Corrected Perspectives for the Icelandic Ásatrúarfélagið


  • Márk Nemes Hungarian Academy of Arts



new religious movements, neopaganism, asatru, Ásatrúarfélagið, alt-right, fieldwork


This study aims to review and refresh previous fieldwork findings of the Icelandic Ásatrúarfélagið neopagan movement. With a membership of over 5500, sensationalist media has created a magnified image of the group, depicting it as a “steadily growing ancient religion” worshipping old Norse deities, such as Odin, Thor, and Njord. Such simplifying articles overemphasized and mistook the movement’s reinterpretations of historical traditions, overexposed the construction of their new communal space, labeling it the “first pagan temple in a millennium, which cultivated a “Heathen Mecca” effect. The author of this study had the opportunity to conduct fieldwork in 2018, documenting Ásatrúarfélagið rituals and activities. 20 years after the first academic articles of the movement, the following study aims to re-evaluate previous research statements and offer novel contexts for some of the documented changes in the Ásatrúarfélagið’s rituals, self-representation, and practices.


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How to Cite

Nemes, M. (2024). An Atypical Base-community: Research Findings and Corrected Perspectives for the Icelandic Ásatrúarfélagið. International Journal for the Study of New Religions, 12(2), 235-259.