Wednesday, October 30, 2019

The 13 fiercest feminist witches in modern literature

Pam Grossman is a writer, curator, and teacher of magical practice and history. She is the host of The Witch Wave podcast (“the Terry Gross of Witches” - Vulture) and the author of Waking the Witch: Reflections on Women, Magic, and Power and What Is A Witch.

At Electric Lit Grossman tagged thirteen stories about strong women with magical powers, including:
Marie Laveau in Voodoo Dreams by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau has enjoyed a recent surge in popularity thanks to Angela Bassett’s depiction of her in the FX series American Horror Story: Coven. But Rhodes’ version of Laveau’s story is a far richer and more nuanced imagining of the infamous New Orleanian’s life. In her novel, Laveau is a free, young black woman in early 19th-century Louisiana who is taken in by a seductive and violent charlatan named John. He grooms her to pretend to be a voodoo priestess so he can gain power and money from unwitting followers, but drama ensues when it becomes clear that Marie has true spiritual gifts and real miracles start to occur. Themes of lineage, religion, responsibility, and autonomy undulate beautifully throughout Rhode’s lush prose, as does the majestic snake deity that Marie comes to worship and embody.
Read about the other entries on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue