An Auto-Ethnographic Enquiry into Contemporary Astrological Practice


  • Liz Hathway University of Wales Trinity Saint David



Cosmologies, cultural astronomy, astrology, history


Using qualitative and re?exive research methodology I explore the cultural role that the planet Saturn plays in contemporary communities of astrologers and the astrological way of life. Through an exploration of Saturn as a mythical ?gure and as symbol, I ?rst discuss astrology’s cultural back­ground and demonstrate that astrologers have a cultural memory that has remained largely loyal to its roots in the Mesopotamian and Hellenistic periods. I then illuminate the way in which for contemporary astrologers sun-sign astrology functions as a contemporary expression of ancient myth. In addition, I examine the importance of the Saturn Return, which has since become an important symbol of transition, a rite of passage, and a modern form of enchantment that not only marks a life transition but also has the potential to effect one.

Author Biography

Liz Hathway, University of Wales Trinity Saint David

Liz Hathway, Sophia Centre for the Study of Cosmology in Culture, Faculty of Humanities and Performing Arts, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Lampeter, Ceredigion, Wales.


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How to Cite

Hathway, L. (2019). Saturn: An Auto-Ethnographic Enquiry into Contemporary Astrological Practice. Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, 13(1), 61–76.