Sunday, April 20, 2014

Witches

Last night's movie was The Conjuring, which I found to be entertaining, but did not love. It was a supernatural thriller involving witches of long ago. It does get good reviews because it's done well. However, I found the religious angle annoying, and as usual, all the witches were portrayed as evil or demonic women. And yes, it's taken for granted that witches really did exist.

I can't help conjuring the image of Agnes Nutter, the witch in the hilarious novel, Good Omens, co-written by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. When Agnes is burned at the stake, she makes sure her dress is loaded with plenty of explosives and nails. See, that's revenge! Seriously, if witches really existed, it would be suicide to mess with them.

Why do witches have to be evil? I enjoy the idea of witches as simply very talented, differently able people.  Consider the All Souls Trilogy, by Deborah Harkness. Her main protagonist in this series is Diana Bishop, a very talented witch more interested in peace and harmony--and the right to love who she will--than anything else. (The last book comes out in July, by the way.)

At this juncture, most of the witches that come to mind are J.K. Rowling characters, which are mostly positive images;  Hermione Granger and Ginny Weasley are certainly good role models for young witches.

Older creations, such as Strega Nona (Tomie DePaola) and Glinda (L. Frank Baum) are also kindly characters who do not want to possess your mind or harm your children.


See, do they look scary? No. They are just enjoying coffee and pastries, which they can probably prepare much faster than most of us. There is no need to be stereotyping them in such a negative fashion.

OH! I almost forgot: Happy Easter!

I did not know about the Finnish Easter witch tradition.

3 comments:

Rose LeMort said...

Real life witches are far less interesting than Hollywood witches. I don't know if I technically fit the hardline definition of witch or Wiccan since there is something of metaphysics in my philosophy. At any rate, Hollywood would find me quite a bore.

Happy Easter/Spring.

actonbell said...

Hope you had a happy Easter, Rose! Somehow, I doubt that you are boring.

TLP said...

I don't like the word "witch." It does bring to mind an evil woman. And yes, if they had power to do evil, then they would save themselves and hurt YOU if you messed with them.