September 1, 2020
9.21 Inches (US)
6.26 Inches (US)
1.16 Pounds (US)
$75.00 USD
v2.1 Reference

Ukrainian Witchcraft Trials

Volhynia, Podolia, and Ruthenia, 17th–18th Centuries

Ukrainian Witchcraft Trials is an analysis of early modern witchcraft trials and legal procedures in Ukrainian lands, along with an examination of quantitative data drawn from the different trials. Kateryna Dysa first describes the ideological background of the tribunals based on works written by priests and theologians that reflect attitudes towards the devil and witches. The main focus of her work, however, is the process leading to witchcraft accusations. From the stories of participants of the trials she shows what led people to enunciate first suspicions then accusations of witchcraft. Finally, she presents a microhistory from one Volhynian village, comparing attitudes towards two "female crimes" in the Ukrainian courts.

The study is based on archival research together with previously published witch trials transcripts. Dysa approaches the trials as indications of belief and practice, attempting to understand the actors involved rather than dismiss or condemn them. She takes care to situate Ukrainian witchcraft and its accompanying trials in a broader European context, with comparisons to some African cases as well.

About the Author

Kateryna Dysa is an Associate Professor of History at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Kyiv.


"Dysa's book is a well-constructed and very inspirational elaboration on the Ukrainian witch trials. The number of discovered and examined sources is impressive (almost 120 as yet unpublished and mostly unknown manuscripts, not to mention the published sources), as are her close examinations of the discussed trials. Given that the Ukrainian Witchcraft Trials is the first vast elaboration of the issue published in English, it will certainly serve for a long time as the main reference to witch trials in the Orthodox world."

—Łukasz Hajdrych, Acta Poloniae Historica

"Some areas of the Slav world get little attention in English-language witchcraft studies, although publications in Slav languages have increased in quantity and quality since the end of the Communist regimes. We are fortunate then that two new books were published in 2020 which are valuable additions to the existing literature, at least for Russia and Ukraine, and especially for those who have no competence in Slavic languages. Kateryna Dysa's thoughtful and detailed, narrowly focused book deals with witchcraft trials in the western part of Ukraine in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries."—W.F. Ryan, Slavonic and East European Review

9786155053115 : ukrainian-witchcraft-trials-dysa
240 Pages
$75.00 USD

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