Wise Women: Willfulness or Witchcraft?: Background information when reading The Rules of Magic

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The Rules of Magic

by Alice Hoffman

The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman X
The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman
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  • First Published:
    Oct 2017, 384 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 2018, 400 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Michelle Anya Anjirbag

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About this Book

Wise Women: Willfulness or Witchcraft?

This article relates to The Rules of Magic

Practical MagicWhether talking about Rules of Magic or its predecessor, Practical Magic, Hoffman always makes one thing clear about the Owens sisters – there is something different about them. The town is not quite sure whether to revile or fear them, but that never stops the community from turning to the Owens' unorthodox problem-solving methods if they have a need. The Owens women have special knowledge and power, something that simultaneously isolates them and gives them prestige. In short, they are witches; figures that constantly appear in many magical tales, fairy tales, and bits of folklore all over the world, often as old women who are meant to be feared.

Baba YagaHoffman isn't the first writer to draw on the play between witches, wise women, women's knowledge, and women's power. Evil stepmothers, hags, cultural icons such as Russian Baba Yaga and Japanese Yamauba – all of these women are old, and wield power and knowledge. They instill fear because they can exert ...

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