TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction…………………………………………………………………………………………………………..1

Chapter One: What is Voodoo……………………………………………………………………………5

What is Voodoo…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..5

History of Voodoo………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………6

Chapter Two: Elements of Voodoo………………………………………………………………….11

Belief in a Divine Creator………………………………………………………………………………………………………..12

Vodoo Spirits, Animism, and Ancestor Worship………………………………………………………………..13

Belief in a Soul…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..16

Rituals, Priests and Priestesses……………………………………………………………………………………………..16

Talismans and Fetishes…………………………………………………………………………………………………………..17

Chapter Three: The Different Strains of Voodoo……………………………………….19

West African Voodoo……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….20

Demographics of Voodoo Faithful in West Africa………………………………………………………..20

The Spiritual Life of West Africa………………………………………………………………………………………21

Chapter Four: Vodou in the Caribbean…………………………………………………………23

Caribbean Vodou……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..23

Haitian Revolution and the Bois Caiman Ceremony……………………………………………………….26

The Bois Caiman Ceremony of August 1791…………………………………………………………………..27

Demographics of the Voodoo Faithful in the Caribbean…………………………………………………28

The Spiritual Life of Vodou in the Caribbean……………………………………………………………………29

Chapter Five: Louisiana Voodoo……………………………………………………………………..33

Louisiana Voodoo…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….34

Demographics of Voodoo Faithful in Louisiana………………………………………………………………..37

The Spiritual Life of Louisiana Voodoo……………………………………………………………………………….38

Chapter Six: The Dark Side of Voodoo…………………………………………………………..41

Curses, Poisons and Hexes…………………………………………………………………………………………………….43

Voodoo Dolls……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..44

Zombies………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………45

Juju and Hoodoo………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………49

Chapter Seven: Voodoo and Racism………………………………………………………………53

Catholic and Christian Prejudices……………………………………………………………………………………….54

Ignorance, Fear, and Racism………………………………………………………………………………………………….55

Chapter Eight: Voodoo Myths and Facts………………………………………………………59

Voodoo Myths…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..59

Voodoo Facts……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..61

Index……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..65

Photo Credits………………………………………………………………………………………………………69

References……………………………………………………………………………………………………………71