Voodoo Brothers: Africana Religions and the Comics, pt. 2

As some of you know, my current project is a book-length study of Africana religions and comics, where I consider how graphic formats are utilized for representing the spiritual traditions of black people. I keep getting sidetracked, though, because the sources are so diverse, and there are a million different stories that need to be told. SoContinue reading “Voodoo Brothers: Africana Religions and the Comics, pt. 2”

Circus Freaks, White Voodoo Women, and the Amazing Afro

In between working on serious stuff that takes up my time, I look at images. Some of these images may seem as though they are not related – but they actually are – like these African circus “freak” posters from the early twentieth century and their counterparts from contemporary body mod subcultures in the United States. So who is the savage?Continue reading “Circus Freaks, White Voodoo Women, and the Amazing Afro”

Apotheosis of Marie Laveau, Hoodoo-Voodoo-Vodou Icon

I knew that it was time to write this post after everyone in the class I was teaching had seen the third season of the FX series American Horror Story, starring Angela Bassett as Marie Laveau, except me. Most of the students had never heard of Mme Marie before, mind you, so it was a perfectContinue reading “Apotheosis of Marie Laveau, Hoodoo-Voodoo-Vodou Icon”

The Buddha in the Botanica

Many years ago I came upon an interesting presence while visiting El Cobre, a village in southeastern Cuba. Translated simply as “Copper,” El Cobre is well known for its 19th century mining concerns, but even more famously, it is the site of the national basilica for the luminous patron saint of Cuba, Our Lady of Charity.Continue reading “The Buddha in the Botanica”

A Story of Conjuring, Magic, and a White guy named Chung

This is one of those strange-but-true stories that I find really interesting. As I was browsing for historical information on Hoodoo, I found multiple sources dating back to the 1800s on the practice of magic as a kind of theatrical entertainment: staged illusions, seances, mesmerism/hypnosis acts, mind-reading shows, and so forth. I believe that these commercializedContinue reading “A Story of Conjuring, Magic, and a White guy named Chung”

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