Supernatural Enemies

by Hilda Ellis Davidson, Anna Chaudhri

Tags: Anthropology, Folklore

288 pp $40.00

ISBN 978-0-89089-711-9

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In view of the present fascination with the supernatural and with visitors from outer space, Supernatural Enemies offers a timely, wide-ranging study of supernatural enemies in artistic, literary and popular traditions. Its coverage ranges from beliefs of the Ancient World and the lore of the Middle Ages in Europe to modern traditions about killer clowns among Scottish children, sightings of the Black Dog in East Anglia, and beliefs in supernatural abduction. Supernatural Enemies contains sections on Gods, Demons and Ogres, Animals and Monsters, Witches and Deceivers, and Pursuers and Abductors.

Davidson and Chaudhri do not seek to provide an exhaustive analysis or history of supernatural enemies in different societies and traditions. Supernatural Enemies presents, for the first time, a variety of approaches to the subject and gives access to some very rare material drawn from ancient iconography and from texts and literature in languages inaccessible to many readers. Archival materials, other records, and contemporary field work are also utilized. From this wealth of sources, the reader obtains vivid portraits of the hostile forces which have so inspired the imagination throughout the ages.

The individual studies are scholarly and well-referenced, contributed by writers from a number of different disciplines: literature, mythology, the history of art, archaeology, psychology, and folklore. Such a multi-disciplined approach is an effective way to treat this rich subject which has never failed to arouse the imagination in past centuries and is still fascinating today.