Overview of Polls

The DRH originally had a single poll organized around the "Religious Group," but is now expanding to include new polls organized around different units, including polls created and edited by outside researchers and research teams. Experts can now choose the poll that is best suited to their particular area of research.

We have recently introduced our first of these new Religion polls, the "Place" poll, and will soon be publishing our first external researcher designed poll, a poll on "Mystical Harm" (i.e, witchcraft, were-creatures, curses, etc.). Future plans include poll organized around religious "Text," "Ritual" and "Supernatural Being." You are welcome to click on these links to provide input about the content of these polls, or to contact us to suggest new polls.

We also plan to eventually expand beyond religion to revive the "Polity" poll, originally designed as part of a collaboration with another research project. Until this time, existing Polity entries can still be browsed on the DRH, but no new entries created.

Poll nameDate modifiedEntriesPDF
Agents of Mystical Harm (v1.0)

The Agents of Mystical Harm (SOMH) is a newly-created dataset, designed to characterize patterns in beliefs about practitioners of mystical harm across societies. Each entry refers to a different practitioner of mystical harm. Some societies will have several of such practitioners – for example, an ethnographer might describe one kind of person who can become an animal at night and a different kind of person who transmits harm through stares. In this case, each practitioner will have their own entry. In another instance, an ethnographer may only describe one practitioner in a society – for example, they may say that people believe that there exist some people who can become animals, fly, and attack with magical spells. In this instance, one entry will encompass all the practitioners for that society. Entries should be named by their society followed by their indigenous name (or if not present, the translations of this term, or finally by a ethnographic name for the practioner).

Aug 01 20190Download

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