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Wykład gościnny im. prof. W. Ostrowskiego - zaproszenie

"Witchcraft and Shamanism in Northern Communities: A View From Scotland".
The term ‘shamanism’ has, in recent years, become something of a catch-all phrase for many types of folk beliefs and practices. Shamanism has traditionally been associated with the north, which is itself often regarded as a magical place; as the home of monsters, fairies and witches. Since classical times the north has been viewed as wild and savage. In Arctic Norway and Sweden, the homelands of the Sámi people were often regarded as barbarous, uncivilized places, while in a Scottish context the Highland and Gaelic-speaking region and the Northern Isles of Orkney and Shetland were viewed by Lowlanders with disdain and suspicion. Scotland and the cultural region of Sápmi shared in common a reputation for magic and witchcraft, as evidenced in sixteenth to early eighteenth century texts. This paper will investigate the supposed connection between shamanism and witchcraft in Early Modern Scotland. Do Scottish witch confessions exhibit evidence of a shamanistic culture, as has been recently claimed? Is shamanism a suitable terminology when addressing Scottish witch trial evidence? What comparisons can be drawn with other northern communities? Furthermore, what relationship did shamans and witches have with the land and northern landscapes? As peripheral figures witches were often identified by contemporaries as outsiders, inhabiting remote spaces, in both a social and geographical sense. Was this stereotype also applied to the shaman?

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