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  • 2016spencephd

    Final published version, 657 KB, Word document

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Witchcraft accusations and persecution as a mechanism for the marginalisation of women

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

  • Samantha Spence
Publication date2016
Number of pages358
Awarding Institution
  • Lancaster University
<mark>Original language</mark>English


In this thesis it is suggested that witchcraft accusations and persecution are being used as a marginalisation mechanism of women. The re-emergence of witchcraft beliefs in contemporary society and the prevalence of the violence associated with such beliefs has received little attention within academic literature, yet witchcraft related violence against women is, progressively, becoming one of the most pervasive forms of violence facing women to-date. This thesis addresses this gap in the literature, discussing the re-emergence of witchcraft beliefs in contemporary society, whilst assessing the effectiveness of international human rights law in protecting women from witchcraft accusations and persecution. Owing to the complexity of the topic, this thesis adopts an interdisciplinary approach, drawing on feminist commentary from disciplines of anthropology, history, law, politics and sociology in order to embrace the importance of cross-cultural enquiry.