Possessing Spirits and Healing Selves: Embodiment and Transformation in an Afro-Brazilian Religion

Possessing Spirits and Healing Selves: Embodiment and Transformation in an Afro-Brazilian Religion

by R. Seligman

Paperback(1st ed. 2014)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781349488759
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan US
Publication date: 09/11/2014
Series: Culture, Mind, and Society
Edition description: 1st ed. 2014
Pages: 209
Sales rank: 958,953
Product dimensions: 5.51(w) x 8.50(h) x (d)

About the Author

Rebecca Seligman is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Northwestern University, USA.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Stepping Into "This Supernatural World" of Candomblé 2. Reflections on the Challenges and Rewards of Integrative Research 3. Sometimes Affliction is the Door: Healing and Transformation in Narratives of Mediumship 4. Looking inside: Biological Mechanisms and Embodiment in Candomblé Trance and Possession 5. Healing the Embodied Self in Candomblé 6. Conclusion: Stepping Back

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From the Publisher

"Spirit possession continues to be a vital aspect of religious experience and healing practices in many traditions. In this compelling ethnographic account of Candomblé in Brazil, Rebecca Seligman explores the transformations of subjectivity, self and identity central to becoming a spirit medium. Through the concept of "biolooping", she brings culture and biology into dialogue to show how knowledge, body practices, and cultural scripts work together to create new versions of selfhood and forms of moral life with healing potential. Anyone seeking deeper understanding and an integrative view of the meanings and functions of dissociative experience in religion and healing will find this work richly rewarding." - Laurence J. Kirmayer, James McGill Professor and Director, Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry, McGill University, Canada

"The question of why spiritual practice is associated with better health is one of the most important puzzles in the study of religion. Possessing Spirits and Healing Selves offers a fascinating solution. Rebecca Seligman demonstrates that religious experts have better cardiac autonomic regulation than non-experts. That association has been observed before, but never explained, and never linked to the patterns of self-transformation she is able to detail. Thus, the book is great for teaching and a research gem." - T. M. Luhrmann, author of When God Talks Back

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