The Anthropology of Magic

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Magic is arguably the least understood subject in anthropology today. Exotic and fascinating,  it offers us a glimpse into another world but it also threatens to undermine the foundations of anthropology due to its supposed irrational and non-scientific nature. Magic has thus often been ‘explained away’ by social or psychological reduction. The Anthropology of Magic redresses the balance and brings magic, as an aspect of consciousness, into focus through the use of classic texts and cutting-edge research. Taking a new approach to some perennial topics in anthropology—such as shamanism, mythology, witchcraft, and healing—the book raises crucial theoretical and methodological issues to provide the reader with an engaging and critical understanding of the dynamics of magic.
Table of contents :


CONTENTS……Page 6
INTRODUCTION……Page 10
SECTION ONE EXPLAINING MAGIC……Page 24
1 MYSTICAL MENTALITY……Page 28
2 PARTICIPATION: A KEY TO UNDERSTANDING MAGIC……Page 38
3 MAGICAL CONNECTIONS AND ASSOCIATIONS……Page 54
SECTION TWO THE EXPERIENCE OF MAGIC……Page 68
4 MAGICAL CONSCIOUSNESS……Page 72
5 A MYTHOLOGICAL LANGUAGE OF MAGIC……Page 84
SECTION THREE PRACTICAL MAGIC……Page 102
6 WEBS OF BELIEFS……Page 106
7 MAGIC IN EVERYDAY LIFE……Page 120
SECTION FOUR WORKING WITH MAGIC……Page 136
8 THE NATURE OF REALITY……Page 140
9 ‘NOT ONLY, BUT ALSO’: A NEW ATTITUDE TOWARD SCIENCE……Page 154
INDEX……Page 170