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Book: Enchantment

Chapter: Modern Enchantment

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.43970


In this chapter, I describe my own take on enchantment. I draw upon the theoretical frameworks discussed in previous chapters along with recent philosophical work on the connections and disjunctions between belief and behaviour to propose a novel approach to an understudied variety of modern enchantment – a variety that I refer to as ‘fluid enchantment.’ I begin by outlining the binary model of belief on which the accounts of enchantment, disenchantment, and re-enchantment rely. Next, I outline three accounts of partial belief that challenge the binary model. Finally, I outline the ways the concept fluid enchantment might be used to describe situations and contexts in which individuals partially, ironically, or playfully engage with magical or supernatural beliefs and practices without fully adhering to these beliefs and without necessarily viewing these practices as being straightforwardly effective.

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