Spirits of Palestine

Spirits of Palestine : Gender, Society, and Stories of the Jinn

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Anthropologist Celia Rothenberg gives us a rare glimpse into the daily life of a contemporary Palestinian village, where women's lives are structured more by moral codes and societal norms than by political activism. In this rich ethnographic portrait, stories of the jinn, or spirit possession, become powerful commentaries on women's senses of strength and subordination, both within their villages and in their larger social and political contexts.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 168 pages
  • 144 x 230 x 18mm | 340.2g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • Illustrations, map
  • 0739106422
  • 9780739106426

Review quote

Rothenberg is a skilled analyst of jinn stories... Rothenberg presents a picture of the jinn as a valuable force in modern Artas... Passionate, vengeful and impulsive ... Spirits of Palestine is a valuable book ... and its publication could not be more timely, as Israel continues to confiscate Palestinian land at an accelerating rate around Bethlehem, and the Separation Wall threatens to destroy the Artas Celia Rothenberg has recorded. Times Literary Supplement Spirits of Palestine is a highly original ethnography offering real insights into the complexities of contemporary Palestinian village and spiritual life and, moreover, is a fascinating account. The old anthropological division between emic and etic is at the heart of the discourse here, between local believe and an outsider's contextualization, but it is extremely sensitively handled. The book is not only of interest to anthropologists and sociologists, but also scholars and students of religion and health. Palestine Exploration Quarterly For the reader seeking to understand both the texture of Palestinian life and the possibilities for resisting oppressive structures of power, Rothenberg offers an original perspective. Journal Of Palestinian Studies In this richly textured and finely tuned ethnography of spirit possession in Artas, Rothenberg follows in the grand anthropological tradition of Hilma Granqvist. Rothenberg is one of the few observers of Palestinian society to forge beyond the visible domains of the exercise of power to inner spiritual worlds. Thus she expands the parameters of Palestinian studies while carrying forward the anthropological approach to power and the supernatural. Through an examination of the jinn (spirits), she connects the moral geography, family dynamics and relations, gendered identities, and diasporic quality of Palestinian village life with the world of spirits. -- Julie Peteet, chair and associate professor of anthropology, University of Louisvilleshow more

About Celia E. Rothenberg

Celia Rothenberg is assistant professor of religious studies and health studies at McMaster University.show more

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 The jinn Chapter 3 Women and the Jinn Chapter 4 Zahia and the Jewish Jinn Chapter 5 Men and the Jinn Chapter 6 Social Geography and the Jinnshow more