Perspectives on African Witchcraft

Perspectives on African Witchcraft

by Mariano Pavanello
English | 2017 | ISBN: 1138217565 | 239 Pages | PDF | 2.56 MB

This volume draws on a range of ethnographic and historical material to provide insight into witchcraft in sub-Saharan Africa. The chapters explore a variety of cultural contexts, with contributions focusing on Cameroon, Central African Republic, Ghana, Mali, Ethiopia and Eritrean diaspora. The book considers the concept of witchcraft itself, the interrelations with religion and medicine, and the theoretical frameworks employed to explain the nature of modern African witchcraft representations.

"Medicine, religion and witchcraft appear as three different and quite distinct domains of ideas, knowledge, practices and beliefs, as well as three separate fields of anthropological and historical investigation, characterized by rather independent objectives, methods and theoretical frameworks. The anthropological and historical interests in these three fields are crowded with questions and problems of political, economic, psychological and philosophical nature that rise from each field separately rather than from the complex web of their interrelations. This book, focusing mainly on witchcraft, aims at exploring that web, though just very few of its multifarious aspects are set forth for discussion."

Mariano Pavanello is a former professor of anthropology at Sapienza University of Rome and former head of the Department of History, Cultures and Religions at the university.

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