Anthropologists and Healers

Radical Empiricists

in Social Analysis

This postscript presents the living ethnography of the work of a ‘psychic’ individual from northern Alaska who recognized her own gift and was aware of her marked position in society due to her possession of second sight. Such people occur freely among all societies. My study gives the record and the testimony of Claire Sevukaq in 1987 from among the Iñupiaq people.1 Based on Claire’s account, it will be seen that these people spend their whole waking lives deeply aware of spirits, alive to what Jung called their ‘collective unconscious’, and what Thomas Fowler (2008) refers to as the ‘psyche’. Like anthropologists, healers such as Claire are what I call ‘radical empiricists’: they go by what their hands feel and what they see with their eyes, or their second sight.

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Social Analysis

The International Journal of Anthropology