Silvia Federici: State Violence and Witch-hunting in the Colonization and Globalization Process

This event will introduce a discussion on witch-hunting as state violence and perceptions of witchcraft in the context of colonization and globalization. Dr. Silvia Federici will offer a lecture addressing witch-hunts and their role in the expansion of capitalist accumulation alongside enclosure, enslavement and land dispossession from women and Indigenous communities. Federici will examine the consequences of witch-hunting for women and their communities, reflecting on her influential books Caliban and the Witch: Women, the Body and Primitive Accumulation (2004) and Witches, Witch-Hunting, and Women (2018).


Silvia Federici

Silvia Federici is a scholar, teacher, and activist from the radical autonomist feminist Marxist tradition. She is currently a Professor Emerita at Hofstra University, where she was an Associate Professor and later Professor of Political Philosophy and International Studies. She is co-founder of the International Feminist Collective, which led to the development of The International Wages for Housework Campaign in 1972. She also co-founded the Committee for Academic Freedom in Africa (CAFA) and the Radical Philosophy Association (RPA) anti-death penalty project. She has written extensively on the subjugation of women and colonial expropriation in relation to enclosures, primitive accumulation, labour, and capitalism. Best known for her widely-read book, Caliban and the Witch: Women, the Body and Primitive Accumulation (2004), Federici is one of the world’s leading scholars on the economic context and social impact of witch trials and witch hunts.

Federici's recently released book, Patriarchy of the Wage: Notes on Marx, Gender, and Feminism