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Bodies, Boundaries and Spirit Possession

Maroccan Women and the Revision of Tradition

Margaret Rausch

Diese Publikation zitieren

Margaret Rausch, Bodies, Boundaries and Spirit Possession (2015), transcript Verlag, Bielefeld, ISBN: 9783839400463

Beschreibung / Abstract

The social structures of Moroccan society have been changing in accordance with western models at an ever-growing rate. The role of Islam in sharing the burden of these changes and in narrowing the ever-expanding gap between modernity and tradition is exemplified by the folk-Islamic spirit possession practices presented in this study. By adjusting their vocation to ongoing processes of commercialization and professionalization and to the changing needs and expectations of their female clientele, traditional women seers have increasingly taken on the therapeutic task of helping women to resolve the growing number of inner and interpersonal conflicts in their daily lives.


Margaret Rausch teaches at the Freie Universität, Berlin, specializing in the areas of folk-Islam, Islamism and women.


Besprochen in:

MESA Buelletin, 42/1-2 (2008), Deborah Kapchan


  • Cover Bodies, Boundaries and Spirit Possession
  • Contents
  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Sîdî Ma'rûf and Perceptions of Bodies and Boundaries
  • Chapter 3: Shuwwâfât as Innovators: From Seers to Self-Made Businesswomen
  • Chapter 4: Marginalizing Women: Spirit Possession, Mother-Daughter Relationships and Independence
  • Chapter 5: Self-Proclaimed Religious Experts and Their Clientele
  • Chapter 6: The Lîla: Women and Communal Religious Ritual
  • Chapter 7: Conclusion
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Arabic Transliteration
  • Glossary of Arabic and Berber Terms

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