The art of Animancy, or Anitheurgy as the practice of Animancy is called, is the magical art with the most discussion surrounding it. While it is not inherently evil, its purview of control is a sensitive subject for many beings. Animancy is the arcane manipulation of magic to achieve effects based around life and death, spirits and souls. In the past, it was also referred to as Necromancy.
Death is seen as many as the final stage in life, but for others, it is seen as a mere stepping stone. There has always been a fascination with it, and many primitive cultures started their existence by the development of ceremonial burial. While death is not evil in its own right, it is not easy for many to see the positive connotations of this art.
Animancy is not as common as other forms of magic, but an Animancer can generally find employ anywhere. There are some societies where they are in high demand, especially those that use the undead for labor or have beliefs involving ancestor worship. Their art is also one of healing, though albeit differently than others. Animancers can often be found being hired to combat other Animancers, and there are some famous for making a living doing so.
As an art, Animancy didn't come into its own until the Second Age, even though the magic had been in use far before that. Animancy is taught openly in the sponsored schools of the Planar Council, but in many others it is often dismissed. There are areas where its practice is not even allowed, though Animancers on their own are often not bothered, even if their magic is looked down upon. Once forums existed, users of this art were able to confer and compare notes, enabling Animancy as a concept and an art to grow. While they are capable of raising the undead, just like Animancy itself these raised beings are not intrinsically evil.