21st century witchcraft: a cynical ploy to make money from the ugly and the gullible.
I wonder how the author can give a whole lecture on contemporary whiches and their attempts to exercise power without having an opinion. There is enough evil in the world. I can see no reason to see contemporary self-proclaimed ‘whiches’ and other female attempts to hit men and more as harmless play, whether in relationships, in business, by meetoo or in court. On the individual level watch out! and on society level stop smiling!
One thing all these spells and practices have in common is that they don’t work. Accusations of witchcraft, on the other hand, were an effective way of dispossessing widows and other single women of their property. Witchcraft was thus another tool for immoral men to exploit women, not vice versa as you imply
My favourite witch has to be the late Mary Daly. Her bizarre career supports the article’s idea that witches thrive in times of chaos and uncertainty. She certainly benefitted from the collapse of doctrine and traditional confidence in post-1960s Catholicism. Being a self proclaimed witch was no obstacle to a long career at the allegedly Jesuit Boston College. Apparently having three doctorates didn’t make her powerful enough in modern academia.
The ludicrous authorities at Boston didn’t even try the traditional stuff like crucifixes, consecrated hosts, holy water or exorcisms. Not even decades of writing concentrated deranged shite in several books brought her down. The only way they finally got rid of her was by catching her out on sex discrimination. She refused to teach male students alongside female.
It’s beginning to look not like Christmas.
Is Boris under the spell of a witch?
Professor Hutton suggests we need a broader definition of magic that includes “any formalised practices by human beings designed to achieve particular ends by the control, manipulation, and direction of supernatural power or of spiritual power concealed within the natural world.” This definition appears to cover all recognised religions which is rather offensive in my opinion.
Dean Radin has written a very interesting book about the potential psi-based roots of what is/was known as magic.
You could perhaps take the rebellious pose of modern witches a little more seriously were they actually taking any kind of counter-culture position. Instead they appear to uncritically suck up the dominant ‘woke’ orthodoxy, wittering on about an undefined ‘patriarchy’, Trump, etc, while being completely uninterested in those wielding real power and influence, such as the tech corporations, academia, broadcast media etc.
I saw Angela Carter in Paris in the 1980s when she gave a talk at the British Institute, and when asked to define her political beliefs she said: “I guess I’m a Leninist witch” which got a good laugh out of the audience.
Far more fun for the girls than the unrewarding churches of religion, feminism and gender attribution. Blair had his babes, Boris has his Wormtongue (he’s even starting to look like Theoden). Corbyn has his witches but neglected their IQ tests. Up in Holyrood. enough said.
Other explanations for the rise in ‘witchcraft’. Firstly, feminism in the form of a career and a series of ultimately meaningless relationships haven’t delivered the happiness that was promised. Secondly, a rejection of science. When a ‘woman’ can have a beard and b***s, it is not surprising that people believe in potions and spells. Thirdly, people who ‘reject hate’ and then put a spell on an ex-boyfriend are not capable of intelligent thought.
BTW Many of the elderly women accused of witchcraft in past centuries provided medical services involving natural remedies. These remedies as with modern medicine had side effects that got the women into trouble.
This ties in nicely with the decline of Enlightenment. In many ways, European Enlightenment with the ideas and scientific advances it brought, led to Western colonisation of most of the world and with it industrial scale slavery and subjugation of the people of the invaded lands. Add to that the racist genocides and historical materialism guided disasters of 20th century that when combined probably killed more people than any other event in human history. Given these, anti-racism and decolonisation (in particular of science) are unsurprising if somewhat delayed reactions here.
The curious question is then what’s left of Western belief systems when Enlightenment fades away? I think we’re beginning to see the answer in Wokeism. That is at least as far as the Protestant religion is concerned, judging by its geographical reach at least, in particular the English speaking countries.
Coming back to witches, I find it noteworthy that the Woke don’t seem any more fond of the Evangelicals than they are of the witches which they seem to find at least some common ground with. That’s probably something many people never saw coming myself included.
Sssh, they’re not really becoming ‘witches’. They do like dressing up and stuff.
“She is echoed by April Graham, whose sweep is even broader: “A Witch is somebody who stands against patriarchy and everything that is currently wrong with our society and any society throughout the ages.” By that definition, we could all be witches — which may, indeed, be the point; Luna says, “Every woman is a Witch.”
I think Stuart Farrar might feel a little left out. He and his wife Janet were the High Priest and Priestess of Gardnerian Wicca in the UK-a branch of Wicca “discovered” by Gerald Gardner-a man- who found it was a great way to validate the naturist trend in the thirties.