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Sat 28 November 2015, 10:30 – 19:00 GMT
Belief in magical practices is prevalent in most human cultures, from the dawn of recorded history up to modern times. Such figures are represented by the shaman of tribal societies, the Druids of Iron Age Europe up to the “cunning man” and “wise woman” of the Early Modern era. All represent the belief that health, wealth, love and good fortune (along with darker intentions) can be evoked by petitioning higher powers.
The term “pagan”, whatever its origins, came to be associated with such individuals from the Post Classical era onwards. The witch hunting hysteria of the 15th through 17th centuries (triggered by social change and fears of heresy) effectively created the modern image of “the witch” that remains influential up to the present. In the early 21st century Wicca, along with Druidism, Heathenism and other lesser known practices such as Goetia represents the most notable contemporary expressions of such beliefs.
For those with an interest in the paranormal, the use of magical rituals to reputedly evoke paranormal effects and entities is of relevance. Equally valid for our field of study is a comprehension of the cultural factors that have preserved such “occult” practices in our largely scientific and secular world. Seriously Bewitched examines the subject of witchcraft, both ancient and modern, from a range of perspectives. Don’t miss this fascinating day about the enduring idea of witchcraft and magic."