Gender of Superstition

« Animal magnetism : The operator putting his patient into a crisis », dans Ebenezer Sibly, A Key To Physic and the Occult Sciences, 1814.“Animal magnetism: The operator putting his patient into a crisis,”  in Ebenezer Sibly, A Key To Physic and the Occult Sciences, 1814.
Albert de Rochas, L’extériorisation de la motricité [The externalization of motive power] (Paris: Chamuel, 1896), 189.
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The classical association between women and superstition underwent a renewal in the second half of the eighteenth century. Their visions, healing powers, and powers of necromancy were re-evaluated and reinterpreted between the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century, albeit in light of new medical or spiritual knowledge dominated by men in major European cities. Ancestral beliefs and popular rites, including when they were practiced by women, were collected as national or regional treasures, while witches were reintegrated within the national history and spirit of peoples. However, this re-evaluation was always fragile and was offset by great scepticism which sometimes got the upper hand, as in the late nineteenth century, and which sometimes yielded to other more political interests, as in the 1930s. With the subsequent spread of the notion that superstitions are no more than relics, the question of gender has become less important.

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