Authors: and

In 1997, Stuart Clark published the first monograph since the time of Jules Michelet to focus on pre-modern ideas about witches. The language of belief in witchcraft studies betrays an anachronistic, modernist and dismissive approach to a mental universe quite different from our own. This book makes the male witch visible, to construct him as a historical subject, as a first step toward a deeper understanding of the functions and role of gender in pre-modern European witch-hunting and ideas about witches. The overtly political dimension to the study of witches in early modern Europe demands a high level of consciousness and reflexivity regarding language, representation, and meaning. William Monter provides a wealth of data about male witches, in an 'unremarkable province' close to 'the heart of northern and western Europe'. Here, men comprised the majority of those tried and executed for witchcraft. The book examines cases in which men were accused of witchcraft. The examples are drawn from several different regions, in order to test conventional generalisations about male witches. The agency theory posits that actors always have choices; 'agent-centred' morality proposes a novel twist on both traditional Kantian internalist categories. The problems of both male and female witches' agency and selfhood are discussed. The book also presents data compiled from ten canonical works, and a brief discussion of demonological illustrations. Finally, it addresses the question of what it means to label a man as a witch within a framework that explicitly and implicitly feminised witchcraft.

Open Access (free)
Criminality during the occupation
James E. Connolly

that all had ‘good habitual conduct’ and morality. They and their families were ‘well noted’ in the commune, they were not ‘drunkards’, ‘debauched’, ‘libertines’, and did not live in ‘concubinage’.98 In short, they were upstanding, respectable members of the community, who seem to have turned to theft as a last resort, out of a survival instinct brought on by the hardships of the occupation. Yet criminality breached both respectable social norms and high­ lighted the lack of solidarity. In May 1917, the Commissaire Central of Roubaix wrote to the Mayor, explaining

in The experience of occupation in the Nord, 1914– 18
Open Access (free)
Agency and selfhood at stake
Lara Apps
Andrew Gow

theory posits that actors always have choices, no matter how restricted; ‘agent-centred’ morality proposes a novel twist on both traditional Kantian internalist categories and a useful political starting point for taking agents’ conscious moral choices seriously. 2 In this chapter, we address the problems of both male and female witches’ agency and selfhood. Issues of agency and resistance are not

in Male witches in early modern Europe
Open Access (free)
Verbal offences on the streets of Modena
Katherine Aron-Beller

1598, Cesare d’Este published an edict entitled Proclamation and Decrees concerning Blasphemy, the observance of Festivals, Gaming and Concubinage (Grida e ordini sopra la Bestemmia, osservar le Feste, Giuoco, e Concubine), mentioned earlier.9 Bringing together a number of broad issues into one edict, the Duke echoed a tradition of political control over his duchy’s morality.10 But as he noted at the beginning of the decree: The Most Serene Signor Duke Cesare da Este, by the Grace of God, Duke of Modena, wishes that his most faithful subjects live like Christians

in Jews on trial
Open Access (free)
The racecourse and racecourse life
Mike Huggins

. In 1938 seventy-three-caravan dwellers sent a solicitor’s letter offering to pay £1 each for the privilege, and gypsies were still very much in evidence on the course.99 Racecourse crime Reformist, respectable morality was also challenged by the more overtly criminal element attracted by the large crowds and the liminality of the course. Petty crime was to be found almost everywhere. During the interwar period pickpockets, three-card tricksters and other con-men gangs, like the welshers, found the racecourse a useful source of revenue. Such activities, though well

in Horseracing and the British 1919–39

By expanding the geographical scope of the history of violence and war, this volume challenges both Western and state-centric narratives of the decline of violence and its relationship to modernity. It highlights instead similarities across early modernity in terms of representations, legitimations, applications of, and motivations for violence. It seeks to integrate methodologies of the study of violence into the history of war, thereby extending the historical significance of both fields of research. Thirteen case studies outline the myriad ways in which large-scale violence was understood and used by states and non-state actors throughout the early modern period across Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Atlantic, and Europe, demonstrating that it was far more complex than would be suggested by simple narratives of conquest and resistance. Moreover, key features of imperial violence apply equally to large-scale violence within societies. As the authors argue, violence was a continuum, ranging from small-scale, local actions to full-blown war. The latter was privileged legally and increasingly associated with states during early modernity, but its legitimacy was frequently contested and many of its violent forms, such as raiding and destruction of buildings and crops, could be found in activities not officially classed as war.

Mary Warnock, embryos and moral expertise
Duncan Wilson

‘applied ethics’. But many of the philosophers who engaged with ethical issues could not shake off the belief that morality was a set of subjective and often incompatible views and premises.5 Warnock was confronted with this problem when her committee disagreed over embryo research and she was unable to reconcile those ‘who said “Look at the benefits” and those who, at the other extreme, said “I don’t care what the benefits are: I feel it to be wrong’”.6 Warnock recognised that there was no way of uniting these opposing views or of reasonably showing that one was more

in The making of British bioethics
Open Access (free)
The Algerian war and the ‘emancipation’ of Muslim women, 1954–62

In May 1958, and four years into the Algerian War of Independence, a revolt again appropriated the revolutionary and republican symbolism of the French Revolution by seizing power through a Committee of Public Safety. This book explores why a repressive colonial system that had for over a century maintained the material and intellectual backwardness of Algerian women now turned to an extensive programme of 'emancipation'. After a brief background sketch of the situation of Algerian women during the post-war decade, it discusses the various factors contributed to the emergence of the first significant women's organisations in the main urban centres. It was only after the outbreak of the rebellion in 1954 and the arrival of many hundreds of wives of army officers that the model of female interventionism became dramatically activated. The French military intervention in Algeria during 1954-1962 derived its force from the Orientalist current in European colonialism and also seemed to foreshadow the revival of global Islamophobia after 1979 and the eventual moves to 'liberate' Muslim societies by US-led neo-imperialism in Afghanistan and Iraq. For the women of Bordj Okhriss, as throughout Algeria, the French army represented a dangerous and powerful force associated with mass destruction, brutality and rape. The central contradiction facing the mobile socio-medical teams teams was how to gain the trust of Algerian women and to bring them social progress and emancipation when they themselves were part of an army that had destroyed their villages and driven them into refugee camps.


Anglophobia in Fascist Italy traces the roots of Fascist Anglophobia from the Great War and through the subsequent peace treaties and its development during the twenty years of Mussolini’s regime. Initially, Britain was seen by many Italians as a ‘false friend’ who was also the main obstacle to Italy’s foreign policy aspirations, a view embraced by Mussolini and his movement. While at times dormant, this Anglophobic sentiment did not disappear in the years that followed, and was later rekindled during the Ethiopian War. The peculiarly Fascist contribution to the assessment of Britain was ideological. From the mid-1920s, the regime’s intellectuals saw Fascism as the answer to a crisis in the Western world and as irredeemably opposed to Western civilisation of the sort exemplified by Britain. Britain was described as having failed the ‘problem of labour’, and Fascism framed as a salvation ideology, which nations would either embrace or face decay. The perception of Britain as a decaying and feeble nation increased after the Great Depression. The consequence of this was a consistent underrating of British power and resolve to resist Italian ambitions. An analysis of popular reception of the Fascist discourse shows that the tendency to underrate Britain had permeated large sectors of the Italian people, and that public opinion was more hostile to Britain than previously thought. Indeed, in some quarters hatred towards the British lasted until the end of the Second World War, in both occupied and liberated Italy.

Duncan Wilson

the face of increasing secularisation. Ramsey and other theologians did not claim that interdisciplinary debates were necessary because procedures such as IVF raised unprecedented moral dilemmas. They instead believed that IVF touched on longstanding moral questions such as ‘respect for life’, but argued that collaboration was needed because these questions had become hard to resolve in secular societies that lacked ‘a common morality’.2 Crucially, these theologians emulated their predecessors by positioning themselves as ancillaries to doctors. They did not

in The making of British bioethics