Plotting the Fall of the King

Rhyd Wildermuth’s review of/response to The Broken Cauldron, extending my critique of Arthurian imperialism through colonial theory.

GODS & RADICALS

Said Arthur, “Is there any one of the marvels yet unobtained?”

Said one of his men, “There is–the blood of the witch Orddu, the daughter of the witch Orwen, of Penn Nant Govid, on the confines of Hell.”

From Culhwch and Olwen


B ritish colonialism soaks through English-speaking Paganism like fetid morning piss. Glance through the shelves of witch bookstores and, once you get past the how-to’s on crystal communication and appropriative dream-catcher spirituality, you find books full of it: delusions of chivalric murderers, bent-knee begging for noble sovereigns, and bourgeois rituals of lords and ladies playing sex by sticking dull knives into etsy-bought chalices.

This should not surprise us. Wicca–the most prevalent of the Pagan traditions–was started by a British Colonial Administrator (Gerald Gardner) and a one-time member of two British fascist groups (Doreen Valiente; National Front and Northern League). Why wouldn’t modern Paganism find itself stained with…

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