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In Scottish mythology, Cailleach, the 'Hag of Winter' uses the whirlpool to wash her plaid, marking the turn of the season.


Motivated by the transformative power of stories to challenge dominant and constraining cultural narratives, Sharon Blackie has embarked on an exploration into the dusty and forgotten corners of European Myth and Folklore.

Her work centres on an examination of female elders—elusive characters, often relegated to the background and overlooked.  In ancient mythology, these figures are more complex and layered in character, often connected to the natural world.  Through this focus, Blackie draws from Jung's writing about the second half of life, emphasising the inward journey and search for meaning that characterises this phase, towards becoming the person we were always meant to be.

Finding our ‘Inner Hag’

Grounded in her profound belief in the power of stories to help us reimagine ourselves, Blackie invites us to identify our own ‘inner hag’—a term she reclaims with positive connotations. She introduces a rich and diverse array of characters lurking in tales from Scotland, Ireland and the British Isles, setting out typologies and qualities of these vivid archetypes.

These nuanced, post-heroic figures can guide us, providing experiences and perspectives through which alternative meanings and connections can be constructed, fostering personal transformation through imagination.

Weaving together multiple finely spun and intersecting threads, this tale will inspire you to revisit these archetypal characters and their stories as you reflect upon and shape your own personal narrative.

For insights into these archetypes, see the Further Reading section below.


Dr. Sharon Blackie is an award-winning writer and internationally recognised teacher whose work sits at the interface of psychology, mythology and ecology.  Her highly acclaimed books, courses, lectures and workshops are focused on the development of the mythic imagination and on the relevance of myths, fairy tales and folk traditions to the personal, social and environmental problems we face today.

Sharon is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and has taught and lectured at several academic institutions, Jungian organisations and cultural festivals around the world. She is online faculty for Pacifica Graduate Institute, California, where she teaches a Graduate Certificate Course on ‘Narrative Psychological Approaches to Finding Ourselves in Fairy Tales’.

She lives in Cumbria, in the north of England, with her husband, dogs, hens and sheep.

See also:  Website | Further Reading



Sharon Blackie has written five books of fiction and nonfiction, including the bestselling 'If Women Rose Rooted'.  Her writing has appeared in anthologies, collections and in several international media outlets.

A number of Sharon Blackie’s publications and writings are referenced throughout the seminar.  Some of these are highlighted below, as well as links to her highly popular Substack newsletter 'The Art of Enchantment'.

Deftly interweaving myth, psychology and memoir, Sharon Blackie argues that menopause ushers in a rich and vibrant new phase of life, and explores the many different ways in which women can flourish during what is so often portrayed as a time of decline. Hagitude unearths the stories of the little-known but powerful elder women in European myth and folklore, inspiring readers to imagine that the last decades of our lives might be the most dynamic of all.

This moving and uplifting book will inspire a new generation of female elders: women who have reclaimed their Inner Hag, matured into their own unique brand of hagitude and who are ready to pass down their deep feminine wisdom for the benefit of the wider Earth community.

Hagitude® is the registered trademark of Sharon Blackie.


A life-changing journey from the wasteland of modern society to a place of nourishment and connection.

The word-of-mouth bestselling If Women Rose Rooted has been described as both transformative and essential. Sharon Blackie leads women on a quest to find their necessary and unique place in the world, drawing inspiration from the wise and powerful females in her native mythology, and guidance from contemporary women who have re-rooted themselves in land and community and taken responsibility for shaping the future.


Described as a gathering place for hags, lovers of myth and fairy tales, and all those seeking the enchanted life, you can explore themes arising in this seminar with Sharon Blackie through her Substack community, newsletter and archive.

The Art of Enchantment’ is in Substack’s ‘Top Ten Literature Substacks’.  Of her approach, Blackie writes that there’s no point in being a writer unless you have readers, and my commitment to all my readers, is to offer something of unique value here, in the hope of inspiring you to continually re-enchant your relationship to this ever-challenged and ever-challenging world.

substack newsletter

Coming in October, 2024
From early childhood, we learn about the world and its possibilities through myths and fairy tales. The heroines, though, tend to be young, golden-haired princesses, and the evil-doers often older women: either wicked witches or unforgiving matriarchs. But from midlife onwards, women today are searching for positive versions of themselves, and this dazzling array of not-to-be-messed-with older characters provides them. They outwit monsters, test and mentor younger heroines, embody the cycles and seasons of the earth, weave the world into being – and almost always have the last laugh.

Many years of research have gone into this new gathering of ungainly giantesses, sequin-strewn fairy godmothers, misunderstood witches, fierce grandmothers, hairy-chinned hags and craggy crones. These wise women manifest their wisdom in different ways, and so offer us inspiration for how we too can walk boldly and live authentically in the second half of life.

publication: coming oct 2024



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image  Photograph: Walter Baxter (2011) Geograph.  Wikimedia Commons. Reproduced through cc0 2.0 Attribution Share-alike license


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'The Three Fates: Lachesis, Atropos and Klotho.'  Hans Baldung. (1513) Woodcut. Metropolitan Museum of Art New York; Classification: Prints. Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1926.

image  Photograph: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Reproduced through open access policy cc0 1.0 license.


video clip, this page

'Close-up of Sea Buckthorn'.

image  Video clip (edited): Black Box Guild (n.d.). Licensed by Envato Elements. 

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