Introduction: Hedging in demons and the uncanny

TitleIntroduction: Hedging in demons and the uncanny
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsT.G. Kirsch, K. Mahlke, and R.A. van Dijk
EditorT.G. Kirsch, K. Mahlke, and R.A. van Dijk
Secondary TitleHedging in demons and the uncanny
Pagination[21 pages]
PublisherRoutledge
Place PublishedLondon
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number9780367221690
Keywordsmagic, Mozambique
Abstract

In contemporary Mozambique, avenging spirits may be appeased by marrying them to young women. For instance, when the spirit of a man who was a homicide victim keeps haunting the murderer’s family, ritually making it a spirit spouse turns it into an official family member. As this example shows, occult manifestations in the domestic and intimate spheres of life are often perceived to be uncanny, abnormal, defective and inadmissible; yet, under certain conditions they can also be deemed desirable. In the social sciences and humanities, a prominent way of addressing the occult has been to examine it through the lens of local ‘spirit idioms’, that is, with a view to the culturally dependent role of references to spiritual forces in people’s sense-making practices and social constructions of reality. Empirical examples of people becoming deeply concerned about the occult in domestic and intimate spheres of life abound.

Citation Key11966