Shamans : Siberian Spirituality and the Western Imagination, Paperback Book

Shamans : Siberian Spirituality and the Western Imagination Paperback

4.5 out of 5 (2 ratings)


With their ability to enter trances, to change into the bodies of other creatures, and to fly through the northern skies, shamans are the subject of both popular and scholarly fascination.

In Shamans: Siberian Spirituality and the Western ImaginationRonald Hutton looks at what is really known about both the shamans of Siberia and about others spread throughout the world.

He traces the growth of knowledge of shamans in Imperial and Stalinist Russia, descibes local variations and different types of shamanism, and explores more recent western influences on its history and modern practice.

This is a challenging book by one of the world's leading authorities on Paganism.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 232 pages, black & white illustrations
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: European history
  • ISBN: 9781847250278

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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

For all those calling themselves Shamans, this should be required reading. The truth behind the term "shaman" is at once more complex and simpler than modern usupers allow. Hutton challenges the idea that conflicting and diverse societies and cultures can apply "shaman" as a blanket term to various indigenous practices and seeks to establish a firm understanding of what the term meant in its correct cultural context and also what siberian magical/spiritual practices as a whole involved.If you have little interest in shamanism read it as a fascinating Cooke's Tour through an exotic,alien culture and it's practices.

Review by

Comprehensive, balanced and fascinating history of the Western interest in Siberian shamanic practices. If you've read Eliade, you must read this.