Video: Wicca in America Versus Britain

I’ve just returned from a fabulous trip to the United Kingdom. While I was there, I had the opportunity to spend time with some online friends from the British Wiccan community, and doing so got me thinking about some of the broad cultural differences in Wicca between the US and UK. The three differences I talk about in this video:

  1. “Wicca” in Britain tends to refer specifically to the Gardnerian and Alexandrian traditions, while in the US it has a much broader meaning.
  2. British Wicca is often more flexible and experimental, whereas Gardnerians in the US are more inclined to do ritual the same way every time.
  3. Wicca in Britain is primarily a ritual framework for practicing witchcraft and experiencing certain mysteries, whereas in the US it’s primarily the priesthood of two particular deities.

There are no universals in Wicca, and every coven is unique. In describing these differences, I certainly don’t mean to suggest that all American covens are one way and all British covens are another! Rather, I’m just describing broad trends I’ve noticed in the respective communities. I think it’s helpful to be aware that we don’t all share the same cultural assumptions when we talk about Wicca, and keeping these general differences in mind can help keep us from talking past each other.

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