This survey aims to present an initial assessment of the incidence of the phenomenon of witch-hunting in India during 2020, at a particularly dramatic historical moment marked by the outbreak of the Covid 19 pandemic. The data are partial, but indicative, and have been gathered through daily monitoring of the main Indian newspapers in English and some newspapers (national and local) in Hindi. In India, the belief in witches is a phenomenon that is linked to specific elements both of Hindu cults, whose devotional expressions and folkloric elements are rooted in the Vedic texts, and the belief systems of some indigenous communities. Indeed, although influenced by the expressions of the Hindu faith, these groups have retained some peculiar religious beliefs, in which magical elements like the relationship with evil powers, from which the belief in witchcraft practices derives, are paramount. However, a study of witch-hunting episodes must also consider the social dimension in which they occur, as scholars working on this subject over the last decades did. Most of the witch-hunts occur within closed social systems, based on patriarchy (or which have undergone patriarchalisation in recent decades) and affected by Hinduisation and tribalisation. Reflection on the religious roots of the belief in witches thus contributes to uncovering the power relations underlying these beliefs.
|Numero di pagine||32|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2020|