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Lecture 8

ANTA02H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 8: Loïc Wacquant, Zion Christian Church, Witchcraft Today


Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANTA02H3
Professor
Bianca Dahl
Lecture
8

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ANTA02 Lecture 8 Thoughts on Witchcraft and the Anthropology of Religion
Madumo: A Man Bewitched
About a young man and his misfortunate events in South Africa
- Not through bad luck, but through external forces
- Got kicked out by family because they believed he was bewitched!
Graphic
Classic ethnography
He believed that his ancestors were unhappy with him
- Went through a series of healing processes to cleanse himself from his bewitching
Zion Christian Church
Madumo’s quest from the ZCC
- Advised him about what causes his misfortunes, and how he can solve it
Adam Ashforth and Kate Fox
Both are reflexive ethnographers
She provided an overview of topics in general
- Had chapters on discrete topics/themes
We do not get an in-depth understanding of characters in Kates book
- One can say the opposite in Ashforth’s book
He spent a lot of time in Soweto and got an in-depth understanding of the culture
Adam Ashforth’s novel is in chronological order and he gained insight into domains of social life
by focusing on 1 person
Anthropology
You can do anthropology by looking at a lot of people and tracing patterns
- Or you can do anthropology by looking in depth at one person as long as you
understand the context!
Apartheid (1948-1994)
Exploited regime of institutionalized racism
- A government governed by racism
- Whites, blacks, Eastern Asians
Neilson Mandela: protester of the Apartheid
Forced segregation:
- White individuals lived in desirable locations while Blacks were forced to live in Tribal
homelands
- 3.5 million people were forced into least desirable locations based on ethnic groups
- “A regime to control culture”
Town ships:
- Still exist today

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- Where Black individuals lived (racially segregated)
Wont see white individuals there
Individuals who lived in the urban areas, had to have passports
Neilson Mandela
Prisoned for many years
Offered release many times if he were not to participate in the fight against the Apartheid!
- He rejected this offer
He believed that a better future was coming for individuals
Apartheid
Brutal torture of Black individuals
Even today, there isn’t much equality in Africa
- Citizens believed this would end through Mandela
The Failed Promises of Democracy
Black individuals who rose to upper class after Apartheid had successful lives
- However, individuals who remained at the bottom class experienced inequality and the
worst living conditions
Spiritual Insecurity
Reduction in democracy led to the increased belief of spiritual insecurity
- This is what lead to this ongoing misfortune
Loic Wacquant
Hyperghetto
- Ghetto is forcing individuals to live in constrained places (townships)
- Black middle class individuals who were able to get out of townships wanted to move into
white areas
They would also take their businesses with them, leaving the remaining individuals
struggling …
Those left behind, were the poorest and could not get out of the townships
- These “hyperghettos” lead to the increased belief of witchcraft
Today
Massive school protests in Africa started last year due to the continuation of colonization
Julius Malema
Formed his own party called EFF (Economic Freedom Fighter)
Blamed white individuals for the continuation of Apartheid
Spiritual Insecurity
Ashforth used this concept in the book, but does not define it
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