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Firewalking and Religious Healing: The Anastenaria of Greece and the American Firewalking Movement (Princeton Modern Greek Studies)

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Firewalking and Religious Healing: The Anastenaria of Greece and the American Firewalking Movement (Princeton Modern Greek Studies) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"If the Saint calls you, if you have an open road, then you don't feel the fire as if it were your enemy," says one of the participants in the Anastenaria. This compelling work evokes and contrasts two forms of firewalking and religious healing: first, the Anastenaria, a northern Greek ritual in which people who are possessed by Saint Constantine dance dramatically over red-hot coals, and, second, American firewalking, one of the more spectacular activities of New Age psychology. Loring Danforth not only analyzes these rituals in light of the most recent work in medical and symbolic anthropology but also describes in detail the lives of individual firewalkers, involving the reader personally in their experiences: he views ritual therapy as a process of transformation and empowerment through which people are metaphorically moved from a state of illness to a state of health. Danforth shows that the Anastenaria and the songs accompanying it allow people to express and resolve conflict-laden family relationships that may lead to certain kinds of illnesses. He also demonstrates how women use the ritual to gain a sense of power and control over their lives without actually challenging the ideology of male dominance that pervades Greek culture. Comparing the Anastenaria with American firewalking, Danforth includes a gripping account of his own participation in a firewalk in rural Maine. Finally he examines the place of anthropology in a postmodern world in which the boundaries between cultures are becoming increasingly blurred.

Synopsis:

"If the Saint calls you, if you have an open road, then you don't feel the fire as if it were your enemy," says one of the participants in the Anastenaria. This compelling work evokes and contrasts two forms of firewalking and religious healing: first, the Anastenaria, a northern Greek ritual in which people who are possessed by Saint Constantine dance dramatically over red-hot coals, and, second, American firewalking, one of the more spectacular activities of New Age psychology. Loring Danforth not only analyzes these rituals in light of the most recent work in medical and symbolic anthropology but also describes in detail the lives of individual firewalkers, involving the reader personally in their experiences: he views ritual therapy as a process of transformation and empowerment through which people are metaphorically moved from a state of illness to a state of health. Danforth shows that the Anastenaria and the songs accompanying it allow people to express and resolve conflict-laden family relationships that may lead to certain kinds of illnesses. He also demonstrates how women use the ritual to gain a sense of power and control over their lives without actually challenging the ideology of male dominance that pervades Greek culture. Comparing the Anastenaria with American firewalking, Danforth includes a gripping account of his own participation in a firewalk in rural Maine. Finally he examines the place of anthropology in a postmodern world in which the boundaries between cultures are becoming increasingly blurred.

Synopsis:

This compelling work evokes and contrasts two forms of firewalking and religious healing.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691028538
Author:
Danforth, Loring M.
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Author:
Danforth, Loring M.
Location:
Princeton, N.J. :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Health
Subject:
Ritual & Practices
Subject:
United states
Subject:
Customs & Traditions
Subject:
Greece
Subject:
Health - General
Subject:
Spiritual healing
Subject:
Rites and ceremonies
Subject:
Fire walking
Subject:
United States Religious life and customs.
Subject:
Spiritual healing -- Greece.
Subject:
Anthropology - General
Subject:
Religion
Subject:
Anthropology
Subject:
Greece Religious life and customs.
Subject:
General-General
Subject:
Child Care and Parenting-General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Princeton Modern Greek Studies (Paperback)
Series Volume:
no. 51
Publication Date:
November 1989
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
9.24x6.10x.82 in. 1.10 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Child Care and Parenting » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Alternative
History and Social Science » Anthropology » Europe
History and Social Science » Anthropology » General
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

Firewalking and Religious Healing: The Anastenaria of Greece and the American Firewalking Movement (Princeton Modern Greek Studies) Used Trade Paper
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Product details 352 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691028538 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "If the Saint calls you, if you have an open road, then you don't feel the fire as if it were your enemy," says one of the participants in the Anastenaria. This compelling work evokes and contrasts two forms of firewalking and religious healing: first, the Anastenaria, a northern Greek ritual in which people who are possessed by Saint Constantine dance dramatically over red-hot coals, and, second, American firewalking, one of the more spectacular activities of New Age psychology. Loring Danforth not only analyzes these rituals in light of the most recent work in medical and symbolic anthropology but also describes in detail the lives of individual firewalkers, involving the reader personally in their experiences: he views ritual therapy as a process of transformation and empowerment through which people are metaphorically moved from a state of illness to a state of health. Danforth shows that the Anastenaria and the songs accompanying it allow people to express and resolve conflict-laden family relationships that may lead to certain kinds of illnesses. He also demonstrates how women use the ritual to gain a sense of power and control over their lives without actually challenging the ideology of male dominance that pervades Greek culture. Comparing the Anastenaria with American firewalking, Danforth includes a gripping account of his own participation in a firewalk in rural Maine. Finally he examines the place of anthropology in a postmodern world in which the boundaries between cultures are becoming increasingly blurred.
"Synopsis" by , This compelling work evokes and contrasts two forms of firewalking and religious healing.
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