Witches and Demons: A Comparative Perspective on Witchcraft and Satanism

Witches and Demons: A Comparative Perspective on Witchcraft and Satanism

by Jean de La Fontaine

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Devil worship, black magic, and witchcraft have long captivated anthropologists as well as the general public. In this volume, Jean La Fontaine explores the intersection of expert and lay understandings of evil and the cultural forms that evil assumes. The chapters touch on public scares about devil-worship, misconceptions about human sacrifice and the use of body parts in healing practices, and mistaken accusations of children practicing witchcraft. Together, these cases demonstrate that comparison is a powerful method of cultural understanding, but warns of the dangers and mistaken conclusions that untrained ideas about other ways of life can lead to.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781785330865
Publisher: Berghahn Books, Incorporated
Publication date: 04/01/2016
Series: Studies in Public and Applied Anthropology , #10
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 156
File size: 4 MB

About the Author

Jean La Fontaine is a Research Fellow of Inform and Professor Emeritus at the London School of Economics, where she taught for nearly twenty years. She received her PhD from the University of Cambridge and has chaired the Association of Social Anthropologists, and served as President of the Royal Anthropological Institute.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Understanding the Other

Chapter 1. Hidden Enemies: Evil at the end of the Millennium
Chapter 2. Concepts of Evil, Witchcraft and the Sexual Abuse of Children in Modern England
Chapter 3. Ritual Murder?
Chapter 4. Magic and medicine: The Torso in the Thames
Chapter 5. Child Witches in London: Tradition and change in religious belief
Chapter 6. The morality of childhood
Chapter 7. Pastors and witches
Chapter 8. London’s witch children

Conclusion: Continuities and changes

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