Synopses & Reviews
Haitian Vodou breaks away from European and American heuristic models for understanding a religio-philosophical system such as Vodou in order to form new approaches with an African ethos. The contributors to this volume, all Haitians, examine the potentially radical and transformative possibilities of the religious and philosophical ideologies of Vodou and locate its foundations more clearly within an African heritage. Essays examine Vodou's roles in organizing rural resistance; forming political values for the transformation of Haiti; teaching social norms, values, and standards; influencing Haitian culture through art and music; merging science with philosophy, both theoretically and in the healing arts; and forming the Haitian "manbo," or priest.
About the Author
Patrick Bellegarde-Smith is Professor of Africology at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is author of Haiti: The Beached Citadel and In the Shadow of Powers: Dantès Bellegarde in Haitian Social Thought, and editor of Fragments of Bone: Neo-African Religions in the New World. He is a houngan asogwe, a priest of Vodou.
Claudine Michel is Professor of Black Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is author of Aspects Educatifs et Moraux du Vodou Haitien and co-author of Théories du Développement de l'Enfant: Etudes Comparatives. She edits the Journal of Haitian Studies.
Table of Contents
Introduction Patrick Bellegarde-Smith and Claudine Michel
1. Vodun and Social Transformation in the African Diasporic Experience: The Concept of Personhood in Haitian Vodun Religion Guérin C. Montilus
2. Shadow-Matter Universes in Haitian and Dagara Ontologies: A Comparative Study Réginald O. Crosley
3. Broken Mirrors: Mythos, Memories, and National History Patrick Bellegarde-Smith
4. Of Worlds Seen and Unseen: The Educational Character of Haitian Vodou Claudine Michel
5. Vodun, Music, and Society in Haiti: Affirmation and Identity Gerdès Fleurant
6. Vodoun, Peasant Songs, and Political Organizing Rénald Clérismé
7. From the Horses' Mouths: Women's Words/Women's Worlds Claudine Michel, Patrick Bellegarde-Smith, and Marlène Racine-Toussaint
8. Rainbow over Water: Art, Vodou Aestheticism, and Philosophy Marc A. Christophe
9. A Reading of the Marasa Concept in Lilas Desquiron's Les Chemins de Loco-Miroir Florence Bellande-Robertson
10. Herbs and Energy: The Holistic Medical System of the Haitian People Max-G. Beauvoir
Conclusion Patrick Bellegarde-Smith and Claudine Michel
Appendix: Table of Haitian Lwa
List of Contributors