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Also, there’s still time to submit pieces for the Journal. The deadline is September 15th.
Sable Aradia, Accipiter Nisus. Rhyd Wildermuth, Yvonne Aburrow, and Lee Davies.
There were many, many good essays about Re-Enchantment last week on the internet. Here are a few:
- Galina Krasskova: Re-Enchanting the World
- Ivo Dominquez, Jr.: Already Enchanted
- John Beckett: 4 Steps to Re-Enchant the World
- Sara Amis: The World Isn’t Disenchanted, It’s You
- Rhyd Wildermuth, “But They’re There…”
The state of the Western, Capitalist world which no longer sees magic.
Originally proposed by Max Weber as a way of explaining the break-down of social relationships after Capitalism which Marx and Engels previously noted in the Communist Manifesto (“All that is solid melts into air, all that is sacred is profaned”).
It must be remembered, Disenchantment is not the state of the world, but rather the state of Western Capitalist Democracies. Industrialization and Enclosure ripped people from relationship to the land and ancestral spirits and replaced those relationships of meaning with the Market logic. Before Capitalism, a forest was a place of spirits and beauty; after Capitalism, a forest is full of lumber to be turned into products for profit.
..”Disenchantment” is not the only principle by which we world the earth. The supernatural can inhabit the world in these other modes of worlding, and not always as a problem of result of conscious belief or ideas. The point is made in an anecdote about the poet W.B. Yeats…
One day, in the period of his extensive researches on Irish folklore in rural Connemara, William Butler Yeats discovered a treasure. The treasure was a certain Mrs. Connolly who had the most magnificent repertoire of fairy storys that WB had ever come across. He sat with her in her little cottage from morning to dusk, listeningand recording her stories, her proverbs, and her lore. As twilight drew on, he had to leave and he stood up, still dazed by all that he had heard. Mrs. Connolly stood at the door as he left, and just as he reached the gate he turned back to her and said quietly, “One more question Mrs. Connolly, if I may. Do you believe in the fairies?” Mrs. Connolly threw her head back and laughed. “Oh, not at all Mr. Yeats, not at all.” W.B. paused, turned away and slouched off down the lane. Then he heard Mrs. Connolly’s voice coming after him down the land: “But they’re there, Mr. Yeats, they’re there.”
As old Mrs. Connolly knew, and as we social scientists often forget, gods and spirits are not dependent on human beliefs for their own existence; what bring them to presence are our practices.
–Dipesh Chakrabarty, Provincializing Europe