Views 100 | Time to read: 4 minutes | Uploaded: 4 - 4 - 2017 | By: Vanessa Acain
The new age of women are redefining feminism, seeking to make the movement inclusive to all races, sexuality, and religions. The idea of “girl power” is a popular concept that is heavily incorporated into contemporary feminism. Defined, girl power is “an attitude of independence, confidence, and empowerment among young women.” Women manifest girl power in exercising self-love, standing up for other females, and getting involved in protests to protect women’s rights.
More recently, a number of girls and women are focusing on girl power beyond the social, economic, and political spheres, and into the spiritual realm. Women such as Simone De Beauvoir and Beyoncé are the old icons of female empowerment; the Wicked Witch of the West and Hermione Granger are the feminist symbols of the new generation.
Witches are having a cultural revival. Contemporary feminism now draws broad support from both men and women, but also a striking amount from covens and witches.
A growing myriad of self-proclaimed feminist witches have decided to cast spells with the intent to “try all means necessary even if it sounds kooky” in order to stop Donald Trump. Beginning in February of this year, witches have cast what they refer to as a “binding spell” under the crescent moon over the next few months. The spell’s ultimate goal is to prevent Trump from continuing in office and includes an orange candle, a picture of Trump to be burned, a tarot card, and a pin. The goal was to use items that could easily be found in the home so that a greater number of people could participate. From the time the last two crescent moons have passed, even non-witches have shown support of the spell and some wanted to give it a try. Intending to use a witch’s personal energy to decrease Trump’s power, the spell is said not to be a hex or curse but to keep Trump from doing harm against people and nature. A self-proclaimed practitioner stated, “It’s the magic equivalent of being slapped down by the courts and to stop the damage he’s doing.”
According to a self-identified witch named Ana, who refused to give her full name for privacy reasons, witchcraft is the “female-centric religious practice for women who are passionately feministic.” Witches have been visible recently performing rituals for protection at protests, the dismantling of the patriarchy, and female empowerment.
Witches are becoming an enduring feminist symbol. According to Pam Grossman, a curator, writer, and teacher of magical practice and history, the witch heavily resonates with the modern woman. Grossman explained that whether a woman is a daughter, mother, or queen, power is derived from their relation to people. A witch, however, has complete control of herself because of the power she bestows unto herself.
Historically, women who challenged patriarchal systems were accused of witchcraft. Women who rebelled, women who were outspoken, and even women who were without husbands were all accused
Witches have become the symbols of women rising up against oppression and finding strength and power within themselves, which is enough for some feminists to support or even practice witchcraft. The quintessential expression of the degrading, oppressive demands of patriarchal norms are the reasons that, as the feminist movement rose in popularity, so did the witch.
While I myself am one of many feminists with no interest in witchcraft, the advocation for reproductive rights, sexual freedom, equal pay, and other fundamental humans rights in this day and age—after centuries of fighting and few results—is tedious, arduous, and exasperating. For this reason, it is no surprise that women have resulted to spells and potions in the hopes to reach the most basic forms