Dr Jenny Butler holds a Lectureship in the Department of Study of Religions at University College Cork where she teaches on contemporary religions in Ireland, Western Esotericism and new religious movements. She was formerly a Lecturer with the Department of Folklore and Ethnology (2002-2013). She was awarded a Government of Ireland Research Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences by The Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS) in support of her doctoral research on Irish contemporary Pagan culture. Her book on this topic, 21st Century Irish Paganism: Worldview, Ritual, Identity, is forthcoming from Routledge.
She has an edited collection titled Folk Metal: Critical Essays on Identity, Myth and Culture forthcoming from Palgrave Macmillan as well as another edited collection entitled The Twin Peaks Phenomenon: Essays on a Show Both Wonderful and Strange forthcoming from McFarland.
In 2010, she was awarded a Dobbin Scholarship, sponsored by AGF International and supported by the Ireland Canada University Foundation (ICUF) for an ongoing project, which is a comparative ethnographic analysis of supernatural folklore of Ireland and Newfoundland, Canada. She is also producing an ethnographic documentary on fairy folklore similar to Ireland and Newfoundland, which was funded by the Ireland-Newfoundland Partnership Scheme.
Her key interests are belief narratives and, specifically, traditions connected to ‘non-ordinary’ (supernatural) beings, intangible cultural heritage, religions and national identities, and the study of new religious movements (NRMs) and emergent religious traditions in the Irish context. She is the Secretary of The Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions (ISASR) and a formal Collaborator of the Marginalised and Endangered Worldviews Study Centre (MEWSC), University College Cork. She is the Founder of the Irish Network for the Study of Esotericism and Paganism (INSEP), which is affiliated with the European Society for the Study of Western Esotericism (ESSWE).