This chapter surveys the history of scholarship on women and magic in antiquity to the early modern witch-hunts in order to situate the contributions of this volume in a broad theoretical conversation. This chapter divides theoretical explanations for the frequent gendering of magic into five categories, and explores the strengths and weaknesses of each approach. Finally, evidence that men constituted the majority of accused witches or magicians in certain times and places serves to challenge universalizing theories and raises questions about scholarly presuppositions that bias the interpretive process in favor of a gender-based explanation. This chapter complicates the relationship between gender and magic, providing an appropriate theoretical introduction for the chapters that follow.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Gender, Magic, Witch-hunts, Witches, Women
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195342703.003.0001
Citation
Stratton, K, & Kalleres, D.S. (Dayna S.). (2014). Interrogating the Magic-Gender Connection. In Daughters of Hecate: Women and Magic in the Ancient World. doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195342703.003.0001