Devolution of Witches and Small Acts of Protest

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We have Hollywood to thank for the introduction of many great films, television shows, actors and actresses such as Harry Potter, Chris and Liam Hemsworth, Mila Kunis, Dirty Dancing, Star Wars, etc.. But we also have Hollywood and the evolution of pop-culture for the devolution of witches and witchcraft. If someone were to walk up to me and ask me to name off witches or witch related things my first answers would be Harry Potter, Charmed, Hocus Pocus, the Halloween Town movies and the Salem Witch Trials. In fact, I would assume that would be many peoples answers these days. At least those closer to my age anyway. But what do you think people would know about African witches? Do you think they would know that their witchcraft was used to heal and obtain information from ancestors in order to benefit those experiencing conflict, stress, anxiety, etc.? The witches of Africa, Sangomas,¬†“…they also give advice that considers the overall social health of their community”(180). Westerners don’t think of acts of kindly service when they think of witches. They think of those “witches” created by Hollywood and see images of, green skinned, ugly old women. And if it isn’t Hollywood providing these negative images of witches, it’s people believing other people are witches because of their new-found wealth, “If you live in an area characterized by relative impoverishment and a neighbor accumulates great wealth, there is a sinking suspicion that blood has been spilt to acquire such disproportionate income” (176) or because of illness, “When attacked by a sudden disease after a neighbor seemed to give you the evil eye or cast a jealous look at your body or belongings. suspicions grow” (176). ¬†Irrational justification and Hollywood have turned something spiritual and positive into something ugly and negative.

Small Action Protest

The NYT article that I chose talks about a woman who “hurled” her napkin to the floor “in a fit of disillusionment, her small protest against the slow creep of mediocrity and missed cues during a four-hour dinner at Per Se that would cost the four of us close to $3,000″ (NYT). Really this story doesn’t seem all that important. But I chose this because I wanted to remind people that protest comes in all shapes, sizes and volumes. And while some protesting has greater effects than others, it is important to remember that all it takes is one person so show one act of protest that can lead to an entire revolution. While the events that are talked about in this article which are utterly boring and really not worth the space it took up in the NYT, it just made me think about small acts of protest. And these acts of protest don’t even have to be because of some big event that is taking place or some national scandal. Maybe it is someone protesting against their parents, against one professor at their school, or the fact that a waiter didn’t bring a new napkin. My point is, it is ok to have small acts of protest. Sometimes it is the smallest acts that provide the most personal gain or spark the largest fire.

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