Witch=Woman? + Protest in Brazil

The idea of the modern Western witch has stray away from actual witchcraft, Satan, and the supernatural. Today, we think of witches to be old evil women wearing dark clothing and a pointed hat with magical powers and fly a broomstick. The word “witch” has negative implication, mostly towards women, in Western society and also in African society. In African society besides the idea of supernatural things and being a woman that is associated with the word “witch,” a witch is related to freedom, privileges, power, and material goods. “The ‘insatiably hungry’ witches referred to their desire to consume all resources, including living souls and dead corpses, to garner more power. In this perspective, women were deemed ‘selfish individuals’ because of their dangerous appropriation of limited reproductive resources…a lack of tolerance to women’s success and authority, which…jealousy hoarded scanty resources and opportunities for its men” (183-184). Why are women mostly called a witch? Probably because of the patriarchal world we lived in, where men are supposed to provide for their families and women stay home and raise children. In some places, it seems strange if a woman makes more money than a man; maybe that’s why there is a wage gap. So when a woman does something controversial in their society they are deemed as a “witch.” If we think about the“Wicked Witch of the West,” the “West” is where majority of the world wealth and power is located, and in some case, other cultures thinks the West is “evil” due to the whole colonization/imperialism. But if a “witch” is someone with freedom, privileges, material goods; then I guess we are in some ways all “witches.”


The article I chose was “Violent Protests in Brazil to Protest Increases Bus Fares,” which was posted on January 8, 2016. The article takes place in Sao Paulo, one of the biggest Brazilian cities, where there is an increase on their bus fare. The bus fare rose more than 10% last year and people already were struggle, especially with Brazil’s economy being in a recession. The protests were organized by the Free Fare Movement and began peaceful but “turned violent when masked anarchists started throwing rocks at police…17 people were arrested among the 3,000 protesters and three police officers were injured.” It is hard to sometimes separate the people, who are trying to exercise their right to peaceful protest, with the people, who are extremists, and that is why we think these protesters are dangerous because that is how media would want us to think. It is the same with the idea of terrorism and how we blame a whole group of people for the action of a small group of extremists. The protest on Friday also brings up issues of nationwide demonstrations against government corruption at all levels, poor public services and the billions being spent by Brazil to host the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. Sometimes you have to wonder where is all of the nation’s money going to and the nation’s priorities.

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