The Witchcraft Reader

The Witchcraft Reader

3.88 (81 ratings by Goodreads)
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The Witchcraft Reader offers a selection of the best historical writing on witchcraft, exploring how belief in witchcraft began, and the social and cultural context in which this belief flourished. A whole range of historical perspectives is collected here, including recent research on the role of gender in witch trials, ideas about the devil and demonic possession, and the reasons for the decline of witch trials.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 464 pages
  • 180 x 244 x 32mm | 938.95g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1 Tables, black and white
  • 0415214920
  • 9780415214926

Table of contents

Introduction 1. Mediaeval Origins 1.1. Witch Trials in Mediaeval Europe, Richard Kieckhefer; 1.2. The Demonization of Mediaeval Heretics, Norman Cohn; 2. Witchcraft, Magic and Culture 2.1. The Experience of Bewitchment, Robin Briggs; 2.2. Weather, Hunger and Fear: Origins of the European Witch-Hunts on Climate, Society and Mentality, Wolfgang Behringer; 2.3. The Sociology of Jura Witchcraft, E. William Monter; 2.4. Witchcraft Narratives and Folklore Motifs in Southern Italy, David Gentilcore; 3. The Idea of a Witch Cult 3.1. Heartland of the Witchcraze, H.C.E. Midelfort; 3.2. Deciphering the Witches' Sabbat, Carlo Ginzburg; 3.3. The Alternative World of the Witches' Sabbat, Eva Pocs; 3.4. Satanic Myths and Cultural Realities, Robert Muchembled; 3.5. Inversion, Misrule and the Meaning of Witchcraft, Stuart Clark; 4. Witchcraft and the Reformation 4.1. Protestant Witchcraft, Catholic Witchcraft, Stuart Clark; 4.2 Confessional Identity and Magic in the Late Sixteenth Century, Edmund Kern; 4.3. Between the Devil and the Inquisitor: Anabaptists, Diaboilical Conspiracies and Magical Beliefs, Gary Waite; 5. Witchcraft, the State and Social Control 5.1. The Crime of Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe, Brian Levack; 6. Possession and the Devil 6.1. The Devil in Renaissance France, David Nicholls; 6.2. The Devil and the German People, H.C.E. Midelfort; 6.3. A Divine Apparition or Demonic Possession? Moshe Sluhovsky; 7. Witchcraft and Gender 7.1. Was Witch-Hunting Woman-Hunting? Christina Larner; 7.2. Patriarchal Reconstruction and Witch Hunting, Marianne Hester; 7.3. Women, Witchcraft and the Legal Process, Jim Sharpe; 7.4. Women: Witches and Witnesses, Clive Holmes; 8. Reading Confessions 8.1. Oedipus and the Devil, Lyndal Roper; 8.2. Woman and Power in Early Modern England: The Case of Margaret Moore 8.3. Witches, Wives and Mothers: Witchcraft Persecution and Women's Confessions in Seventeenth-century England, Louise Jackson; 9. The Decline of Witchcraft 9.1. The End of Witch Trials, Brian Levack; 9.2. The Decline of Witches and the Rise of Vampires, Gabor Klaniczay; 9.3. Urbanisation and the Decline of Witchcraft, Owen Davies; 10. A Twentieth-Century Witch-Hunt? 10.1. Occult Survivors: The Making of a Myth, Philip Jenkins and Daniel Maier-Katkin; 10.2. The Wish Not to Know, Patrick Casement
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Review quote

'A library of the subject in miniature, affording helpful insights and convenient material for students at all levels.' - Ronald Hutton
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Rating details

81 ratings
3.88 out of 5 stars
5 26% (21)
4 44% (36)
3 23% (19)
2 5% (4)
1 1% (1)
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