The Commodification of Witchcraft


  • Douglas Ezzy


The modern Witchcraft movement began in small family-like groups. Increasing popularity and market forces have influenced both the practices and beliefs of contemporary Witchcraft. Three websites of prominent Australia Witches are analysed to identify the variations in the effects of commodification on Witchcraft. To varying degrees, commodified Witchcraft facilitates an ideology of consumption by attempting to manipulate people's decisions about their spiritual practices for the purpose of selling commodities such as books of spells and bottles of lotion. The websites of commodified Witchcraft play on people's sense of isolation and alienation, offering the hedonist consumption of commodities as solutions, substituting the purchase of commodities for engagement with personal self-discovery. These new forms of oppression need to be weighed against the freedom of individualism and new forms of spirituality facilitated by consumerism.