Synopses & Reviews
This book of exquisite duotone photographs looks at the Bori, a West African shamanist cult centered on possession by the spirits of ancestors. Its followers, priests (also known as Bori), and assistants are clairvoyants or faith healers. They perform ecstatic ritual dances to conjure up djinns--spirits--to protect society and its individual members from evil. Faith healers (Boka) employ traditional plants to heal the sick. Caroline Alida's black-and-white portraits of the Bori and the objects used in their ritual practices were taken in dim natural light, imbuing the photos with a contemplative atmosphere.
About the Author
Caroline Alida is a photographer who studies the power of the intangible. Since 2001 she has made regular trips to Niger to research the Bori. Adeline Masquelier is head of the anthropology department at Tulane University, New Orleans.