Mystery Religion Babylon

Hex appeal: how Netflix’s Sabrina taps into the rising feminist passion for witches: Sabrina reflects the millennial face of witchcraft.

Blog note:

Deuteronomy 18:10-12 King James Version (KJV) …

10 There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch.

11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.

12 For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord: and because of these abominations the Lord thy God doth drive them out from before thee.

Ephesians 6:12 … For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Exodus 22:18 … Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.

1 Samuel 15:23 … For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

2 Kings 9:22 … And it came to pass, when Joram saw Jehu, that he said, Is it peace, Jehu? And he answered, What peace, so long as the whoredoms of thy mother Jezebel and her witchcrafts are so many?

2 Chronicles 33:6 … And he caused his children to pass through the fire in the valley of the son of Hinnom: also he observed times, and used enchantments, and used witchcraft, and dealt with a familiar spirit, and with wizards: he wrought much evilin the sight of the Lord, to provoke him to anger.

Micah 5:12 … And I will cut off witchcrafts out of thine hand; and thou shalt have no more soothsayers:

Nahum 3:4 … Because of the multitude of the whoredoms of the wellfavoured harlot, the mistress of witchcrafts, that selleth nations through her whoredoms, and families through her witchcrafts.

Galatians 5:20 … Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

(Emphasis added). End of note.

Hex appeal: how Netflix’s Sabrina taps into the rising feminist passion for witches

Feminists have long celebrated witches as symbols of untamed, angry, joyous and immortal female energy. Now the remake of the 90s teen drama is using the symbol to dramatic effect

Elle Hunt. Mon 29 Oct 2018 12.09 EDTLast modified on Mon 29 Oct 2018 14.15 EDT. The Guardian.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina – Netflix’s reboot of the 90s cackle-com Sabrina the Teenage Witch – brings together a few contemporary cultural trends. One is nostalgia – it is born of the same universe, Archie Comics, as last year’s teen drama Riverdale. Another is plucky young people being pitted against the supernatural à la Stranger Things. And then there is the feminist power of witches.

On the cusp of her “dark baptism” coming-of-age ceremony, 15-year-old Sabrina Spellman (Kiernan Shipka, best known as Sally Draper in Mad Men) is half witch, half mortal. Torn between the two worlds, she uses her powers for feminist good. When her non-binary best friend is bullied by football players about whether “she is a boy or a girl”, Sabrina reports it to the (straight, it is assumed) white, male principal. He refuses to act – telling Sabrina: “You’re suggesting a witch hunt” – so she hexes him with spiders.

Witchcraft’s connection with feminism dates as far back as the first witch trials, once parsed as the persecution of women who defied the male establishment. The feminist movement reclaimed the sexist slur “witch”, with several groups in the US campaigning as Women’s International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell in the late 60s.

Witch called on feminists to align with other liberal causes to campaign for wider social change. (Other expansions were used, depending on the cause of the day, including Women Incensed at Telephone Company Harassment, Women Infuriated at Taking Care of Hoodlums and Women Interested in Toppling Consumer Holidays.) The witch was its central symbol, accessed – as one of its pamphlets explained – “by being female, untamed, angry, joyous and immortal”.

Some feminists are reclaiming the craft as well as the word. Like Witch, they are motivated by the greater good. President Trump and the #MeToo movement have reportedly mobilised a new generation of witches in the US, with mass hexings following Trump’s inauguration. The website Broadly reported on an antifascist spellbook drafted on Google Docs. This month, a coven met to hex the new supreme court justice, Brett Kavanaugh.

With its hip soundtrack, retro feel and intersectional feminism, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina reflects this millennial face of witchcraft. To support her friend, Sabrina co-founds – with the daughter of a Black Panther – a club “to topple the white patriarchy”: the Women’s Intersectional Cultural and Creative Association, or Wicca. And so feminism rides its third magical wave.

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