Speak of the Devil: Tales of Satanic Abuse in Contemporary England
Allegations of satanic child abuse became widespread in north America in the early 1980s. In Britain shortly afterwards there were similar claims that sexual abuse, torture and murder were taking place as part of rites of witchcraft and devil worship Jean La Fontaine, a senior British anthropologist, was funded by the Department of Health to undertake research into the allegations and found that there was no independent corroboration of these allegations in the many cases she studied. The problem then was to explain why they continued to be believed. Professor La Fontaine draws parallels with witchcraft accusations in the classic literature of anthropology and also with the witch-hunts in the sixteenth-and seventeenth-century Europe, showing how this contemporary social movement drew on different elements in British society and was fostered by the climate of socio-economic change and insecurity. Persuasively argued, this is an authoritative and scholarly account of a controversial, emotive issue.
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Introduction the problem
The personification of evil
Witches satanists and the occult
The extent of the allegations
The question of proof
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abuse of children accepted accounts accused activities acts adults allegations of satanic appear associated belief Britain campaign century changes chapter child Christian Church claim clear common concerned confessions considered cult culture described descriptions devil earlier early modern effect Europe evidence evil existence experience explanation fact figure followed foster-mother girl given groups happened human ideas identified included indicated individuals influence interest interviews involved Jenkins lack later magic material meaning mentioned movement nature occult occultists organisation parents particular person pointed police practices present problem protection published question reasons recorded referred religious reported represent respondents ritual abuse satanic abuse satanic rituals satanists scepticism seems seen sexual abuse similar social workers society stories survey survivors taken talk teenagers tell term therapists told United victims witch-hunts witchcraft witches
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Transparency and Conspiracy: Ethnographies of Suspicion in the New World Order
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