Shaman of Oberstdorf: Chonrad Stoeckhlin and the Phantoms of the Night - Studies in Early Modern German History (Paperback)
  • Shaman of Oberstdorf: Chonrad Stoeckhlin and the Phantoms of the Night - Studies in Early Modern German History (Paperback)
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Shaman of Oberstdorf: Chonrad Stoeckhlin and the Phantoms of the Night - Studies in Early Modern German History (Paperback)

(author), (translator)
£29.95
Paperback 224 Pages / Published: 30/06/2000
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This is the story of a 16th-century mountain village caught in a panic of its own making. Four hundred years ago, the Bavarian alpine town of Oberstdorf, surrounded by the towering peaks of the Vorarlberg, was awash in legends and rumours of prophets and healers, of spirits and spectres, of witches and soothsayers. The book focuses on the life of a horse wrangler named Chonrad Stoeckhlin (1549-1587), whose extraordinary visions of the afterlife and enthusiastic practice of the occult eventually led to his death - and to the death of a number of village women - for crimes of witchcraft. In addition to recounting Stoeckhlin's tale, this book examines the larger world of alpine myths concerning ghosts and other spirits of the night, documenting how these myths have been abused by German political movements over the years.

Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813918532
Number of pages: 224
Weight: 336 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

Behringer's book is one of the most vivid and dramatic pieces of microhistory I have ever read.... The fluent and fast-moving narrative will appeal to many readers with its human interest aspect. The author places this story in its historical contexts, from folklore to the Counter Reformation, so that the fate of Chonrad Stoekhlin illuminates rural life in early modern Germany.

--Peter Burke, Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge

This story is better documented, more sophisticated in interpretation, and in some respects better told than that of the Italian miller, Menocchio, that Carlo Ginzburg presents in his justly famous The Cheese and the Worms. Behringer is the premier historian of the witchcraft panic in this part of Germany and has a vast command of local knowledge that enables him to cotextualize this gripping story in an extemely concrete and colorful way.

--Thomas A. Brady, Jr., University of California, Berkeley

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