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The Scythe and the Pentagram: Santa Muerte from Folk Catholicism to Occultism
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology, History of Religions.
Linkoping Univ, Dept Culture & Commun IKK Arts & Humanities KVA, S-58183 Linkoping, Sweden.
2017 (English)In: Religions, ISSN 2077-1444, E-ISSN 2077-1444, Vol. 8, no 1, article id 1Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Santa Muerte is establishing a presence among practitioners of contemporary occultism in Europe and North America. The occult milieu is highly different from the Mexican cult of Santa Muerte, having a strong heritage of secrecy and tradition as social capital and being mostly middle-class in orientation. Nonetheless, this Catholic folk saint with a mostly pragmatic, popular, and grassroots cult is becoming increasingly popular among occultists. Based on a survey of three recent books on Santa Muerte geared towards an Anglophone, occult audience, it is therefore the aim of this article to understand how and why the Skeleton Saint is attracting adherents in the occult milieu, by analyzing the underlying causes of this growing trend, as well as the conditions shaping it. It is the overall argument of this article that the beginning reception of Santa Muerte in occultism is a result of perceived needs and demands specific to the occult milieu rather than characteristics inherent in the symbol itself, and that an analysis of the ways in which she is spreading outside of her original sociocultural context must be guided by an understanding of the novel one she is integrated in.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 8, no 1, article id 1
Keywords [en]
Santa Muerte, occultism, Catholicism
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-360723DOI: 10.3390/rel8010001ISI: 000398703400001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-360723DiVA, id: diva2:1249121
Available from: 2018-09-18 Created: 2018-09-18 Last updated: 2018-09-18Bibliographically approved

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Hedenborg White, Manon

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Output format
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