5 of 11 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Popular Magic: Cunning Folk in English History (Paperback)Popular Magic: Cunning-folk in English History is firstly a re-titled reprint of his book Cunning folk so if you have that book there is no point getting this one.
All in all a very interesting and informative book which is well written and remarkable accessible for a book written by an academic. I really have only few criticisms, it could have done with illustrations in places, and though the other chapters were quite comprehensive I thought the last chapter was a little weak.
My last criticism regards the author's use of his definition, firstly `he' decides on a definition of what a cunning person was and then discounts those who don't fit into his definition as not being cunning folk. Explanation: the author decides that the defining characteristic of a cunning person is (among the many arts of the cunning folk to choose) un-bewitching; if a person is no longer recorded as doing un-bewitching the author has decided that that person is no longer a cunning person. I really don't think that this holds much water after all cunning folk practiced/practice the magic that their clients ask for, it's therefore not surprising that as demand for a service falls away that they less likely to provide that service. Also as a service like un-bewitching becomes less socially expectable its provision becomes more concealed. Anyway who said that Cunning Folk 'had' to do un-bewitching in the first place.
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Initial post: 29 Jun 2009 13:27:14 BDT
[Deleted by the author on 26 Jul 2011 14:54:17 BDT]
In reply to an earlier post on 7 Oct 2009 11:30:40 BDT
Last edited by the author on 18 Nov 2009 14:32:41 GMT
Jan Pellow says:
Clearly in your race to say something negative about my review you didn't even bother reading it properly.
Please read my review again, I didn't say that "Cunning folk" (or any of the myriad names given to such folk) didn't unbewitch or that they weren't in the past expected to be able to unbewitch, only that once cunning folk by whatever name stopped unbewitching due to lack of demand they didn't cease to exist or stop being cunning folk.
No Mr Semmens, as I have pointed out before, I don't have a variety of pseudonyms just this one, though it seems you stalk the internet under quite a few. What is it that you hope to gain by wondering about under various sock puppet Identities attacking anyone that has an opinion different than your own?
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