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Yorùbá Influences on Haitian Vodou and New Orleans Voodoo

Ina J. Fandrich
Journal of Black Studies
Vol. 37, No. 5 (May., 2007), pp. 775-791
Published by: Sage Publications, Inc.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40034365
Page Count: 17
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Yorùbá Influences on Haitian Vodou and New Orleans Voodoo
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Abstract

The enormous impact of the Yorùbá religion on the New World African diaspora has been well established by scholars, especially when referring to the heavily Yorùbánized popular Creole belief systems of Cuba (Santeríal Lucumí, Palo) and Brazil (Umbanda, Candomblé). Far less known are the connections between the Yorùbá faith and the African-based religions of Haiti (Vodou) and New Orleans (Voodoo/Voudou). This article seeks to fill these lacunae and explores the Yorùbá influences on these two neo-African religious traditions both from a contemporary and historical perspective, sorting through many misconceptions attached to the confusing and, for the most part, derogatory English term Voodoo. Interestingly, it is the powerful warrior spirits Eshu/Elegba and Ogun who proved to be the most resilient survivors of Yorùbá cosmology in the Haitian and New Orleanian diaspora.

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