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Witchcraft, Lycanthropy, Drugs and Disease

An Anthropological Study of the European Witch-Hunts- Second Printing

by Homayun Sidky (Author)
©2004 Others XIV, 330 Pages
Series: American University Studies , Volume 70

Summary

Long before the political mass-murders witnessed in the present century, western Europe experienced another kind of holocaust – the witch-hunts of the early modern period. Condemned of flying through the air, changing into animals, and worshipping the Devil, over a hundred thousand people were brutally tortured, systematically maimed and burned alive. Why did these persecutions take place? Was it superstition, irrationality, or mass delusion that led to the witch-hunts? This study seeks explanations in the tangible actions of human actors and their worldly circumstances. The approach taken is anthropological; inferences are grounded on a wide spectrum of variables, ranging from the political and ideological practices used to mystify earthly affairs, to the logical structure of witch-beliefs, torture technology, and the role of psychotropic drugs and epidemic diseases.

Details

Pages
XIV, 330
Year
2004
ISBN (PDF)
9781453910146
DOI
10.3726/978-1-4539-1014-6
Language
English
Publication date
1997 (July)
Keywords
burning witches witchhunter witches
Published
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 1997, 2004. XIV, 330 pp., num. ill.

Biographical notes

Homayun Sidky (Author)

The Author: H. Sidky is an anthropologist specializing in cultural ecology and the anthropology of religion. He is currently affiliated with the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Miami University, Ohio. His articles have appeared in many journals and he is the author of Hunza: An Ethnographic Outline (1995) and Irrigation and State Formation in Hunza (1996).

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Title: Witchcraft, Lycanthropy, Drugs and Disease