Some Young Women Are Going Back to Witchcraft

 Witches: they’re back (or perhaps they never left). Photograph: Beth Maiden
Witches: they’re back (or perhaps they never left). Photograph: Beth Maiden

Rapper Azealia Banks brought witchcraft back into the mainstream by tweeting ‘I’m really a witch’. But women in the US have been harnessing its power for decades as a ‘spiritual but not religious’ way to express feminist ambitions.

“I’m really a witch,” rapper Azealia Banks quipped last January, shortly before all hell broke loose on her Twitter account.

Banks is known for her online rants. She tends to share fairly dense ideas, spontaneously spun out in punchy lines liberally interspersed with curse words. I don’t know a person on this earth who can agree with every one of them, but her opinions are smarter than she usually gets credit for.

Still, even by Banks’s standards, the witch thing was weird. It came out in the middle of a run about black Americans and their relationship to Christianity:

I wonder if most of the black American Christians in the US know WHY they are Christian. I wonder if they even consider for a SECOND that before their ancestors came to the Americas that they may have believed in something ELSE.

Not uncontroversial, but not wrong. Banks then suddenly took a hard left into what seemed like either a joke, or an unexpected embrace of Harry Potter fan fiction. She went on:

But really, it’s all about magic. The most magical people are the ones who have to deal with oppression, because the non-magical are jealous. That’s why Jews and Blacks have been persecuted over and over again throughout history. because they have the most magic … all I’m trying to say is that black people are naturally born SEERS, DIVINERS, WITCHES AND WIZARDS. we have REAL supernatural powers, and the sooner we ALL learn to cultivate them and access them, the sooner we can REALLY fix shit.

Then she joked that racism might end a lot sooner if black people could make their enemies sicken and die with a thought, and of course the rightwing publications started sounding the klaxons.

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Source: Guardian UK |