© CNRS-IMAGES - 2010

Rituals of Life and Death in Cancuc - Mexico





Production year



Original material



In Cancuc, Chiapas, Mexico, Antonia Lopez Perez tells how her husband, after an agrarian dispute with his family and neighbours, was cast a spell. After five long years of suffering and illness, he died a victim of witchcraft. Throughout the documentary, witchcraft rituals (manipulations, preparations, prayers and offerings) are revealed and commented on by those who practice them, alternating with the comments of three judges and the widow.
The judges explain the actions they have taken against witches (imprisonment, fines). But, how to do justice to the victim without attracting the hatred of the sorcerer? How can society as a whole be prevented from sinking into violence against the person who is said to be at the root of diseases and calamities?

CNRS Institute(s)

Regional office(s)

Scientific topics

CNRS Images,

Our work is guided by the way scientists question the world around them and we translate their research into images to help people to understand the world better and to awaken their curiosity and wonderment.