A General Theory of Magic
First written by Marcel Mauss and Henri Humbert in 1902, A General Theory of Magic gained a wide new readership when republished by Mauss in 1950. As a study of magic in 'primitive' societies and its survival today in our thoughts and social actions, it represents what Claude LÚvi-Strauss called, in an introduction to that edition, the astonishing modernity of the mind of one of the century's greatest thinkers. The book offers a fascinating snapshot of magic throughout various cultures as well as deep sociological and religious insights still very much relevant today. At a period when art, magic and science appear to be crossing paths once again, A General Theory of Magic presents itself as a classic for our times.
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abstract activities alchemists animal Atharva Veda attributed Australian become Brahman called ceremonies Cherokee concerned considered contiguity cult dead demonology demons derive effects elements everything evil example exist exorcization explain expressed formulas Frazer function gods Greek Hindu idea of magical incantations India individual involved kind law of similarity laws of sympathy magi magic and religion magical beliefs magical facts magical judgments magical power magical representations magical rites magical ritual magical system magician manitou mano Marcel Mauss Mauss Melanesia milieu Moreover mystical myths nature Nevertheless notion object observed opposite orenda performed person phenomena Pitta-Pitta play possess practices primitive produced properties qualities relationship religious rites result ritual role sacred sacrifice social society sorcerer soul spells symbolic sympathetic magic sympathetic rites taboos texts Theory of Magic things tindalo tions totemic traditional tribes vidual whole witch words