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Popular magic in modern Europe

The study of witchcraft accusations in Europe during the period after the end of the witch trials is still in its infancy. Witches were scratched in England, swum in Germany, beaten in the Netherlands and shot in France. The continued widespread belief in witchcraft and magic in nineteenth- and twentieth-century France has received considerable academic attention. The book discusses the extent and nature of witchcraft accusations in the period and provides a general survey of the published work on the subject for an English audience. It explores the presence of magical elements in everyday life during the modern period in Spain. The book provides a general overview of vernacular magical beliefs and practices in Italy from the time of unification to the present, with particular attention to how these traditions have been studied. By functioning as mechanisms of social ethos and control, narratives of magical harm were assured a place at the very heart of rural Finnish social dynamics into the twentieth century. The book draws upon over 300 narratives recorded in rural Finland in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries that provide information concerning the social relations, tensions and strategies that framed sorcery and the counter-magic employed against it. It is concerned with a special form of witchcraft that is practised only amongst Hungarians living in Transylvania.

Rousseau’s and nationalism

la Corse. However, these efforts at creating ‘cultural homogeneity’ do not make him a nationalist in the strict sense, i.e. as defined by Gellner. Rousseau’s considerations in the 1750s were – or, so it might be argued – mostly (un)original elaborations of the doctrine of civic virtue and patriotism developed by Nicolo Machiavelli, in Discoursi,10 and more recently by Pufendorf and Montesquieu. Pufendorf had argued that ‘without religion no society can be maintained’ (Hendel 1934: 221), a view, which Montesquieu had supported in L’esprit des Lois (Book 25, ch. 9

in The political philosophy of Jean-Jacques Rousseau
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‘Commonwealth’ politics under George I, 1714–22

courage and conduct, of liberal and generous spirits’. Jews as humans, deserved to be regarded ‘under the common circumstances of human nature’ and as ‘creatures of the same species’. The diversity of manners ‘and especially contrary rites or doctrines in religion’ led to hatred, cruel persecution and murder.14 The experience of dissenting Protestants under the lash of ‘popery’ was similar.15 Typically, for Toland, the sad experience of the Jews was not the result of accident but the design of corrupt priests who acted like ‘ravenous wolves’. ‘Their most inveterate

in Republican learning
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Religious influences on the depictions of science in mainstream movies

16 Playing God: religious influences on the depictions of science in mainstream movies David A. Kirby, Amy C. Chambers Research on public attitudes towards science has revealed that individuals’ personal values and belief system are crucial factors in determining how they respond to new developments in science, technology and medicine, such as nanotechnology (Brossard et al., 2009; Nisbet and Scheufele, 2009; Scheufele et al., 2009; Toumey, 2011). Few cultural institutions have more influence on personal values and belief systems than religion, and few cultural

in Science and the politics of openness
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A short essay on enthusia

Introduction: a short essay on enthusiasm Modern American literature began with a statement of enthusiasm. Our age is retrospective. It builds the sepulchres of the fathers. It writes biographies, histories, and criticism. The foregoing generations beheld God and nature face to face; we, through their eyes. Why should not we also enjoy an original relation to the universe? Why should not we have a poetry and philosophy of insight and not of tradition, and a religion by revelation to us, and not the history of theirs? Embosomed for a season in nature, whose

in Enthusiast!

, classical studies, linguistics, philosophy, religious studies and sociology to develop a collaborative multidisciplinary research programme that could set civilisation as the consummate plane of all social orders (Arnason et  al., 2005; Eisenstadt, 1986). For Eisenstadt, the gulf between the ontological conception of higher and lower orders of existence produces the conflicts of social life that become the dynamics of development and the basis for long-​term developmental paths. A sharp focus on transcendence and the world religions defines his approach to civilisations

in Debating civilisations

dual character. That Japan’s relational orientation is reaffirmed throughout its history is evident in major episodes of engagement with the outside world and reflection on its existing dynamic traditions. The formative period features in the three major perspectives. The three diverge, however, on how social change is conditioned by relations with the East Asian region. For Eisenstadt, Japan was an unusual de-​axialising civilisation (1996). In its digestion and relativisation of the world religions, Japan had a foundational moment in which a pattern of ontological

in Debating civilisations

magical practitioners in nineteenth-century Berry, and Benoît Marin-Curtoud has considered, in more general fashion, the prosecution of magical practitioners under laws against illegal medicine between 1870 and 1940. 2 There have also been numerous related studies on folk medicine and popular religion that help broaden our contextual understanding of the social relevance of witchcraft and magic in the period. 3 All these reveal the

in Witchcraft Continued
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sector of the economy? Is being motivated by the values of ‘public service’ likely to produce better value for money in such services than the ‘profit motive’ of private business? What should be the levels of taxation in order to fund these services? What is the proper role of the state in society? What are the proper limits on its powers? Are there areas of private life, such as religion and conscience, into which the state should

in Understanding political ideas and movements

how social relations in mining areas were shaped by disability and asks how the lives of men, women and children were affected by impairments or chronic illness – whether their own, or those of family members. Despite significant research on evolving patterns of home life, leisure and religion in the coalfields, there has been little attempt to examine how social and familial relations of miners, and their emotional or spiritual attachments, were affected by illness or impairment.10 This chapter contributes to our evolving understanding of coalfield life by

in Disability in the Industrial Revolution