How 'voodoo' became a metaphor for evil

'Voodoo' has come to represent something evil when it appears in popular culture. 'Black magic', witchcraft – it's always portrayed as something to be feared. But in reality, Vodou, as it's correctly written, is an official religion practised by millions of people. Why has it been vilified for so long? Josh Toussaint-Strauss looks back over the history of Haitan Vodou and Louisiana Voodoo, which is a separate belief system altogether, and its portrayal to find an answer

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Further reading:

Haiti Unbound: A Spiralist Challenge to the Postcolonial Canon
www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt5vjfnr

Desire and Disaster in New Orleans: Tourism, Race, and Historical Memory
www.dukeupress.edu/desire-and-disaster-in-new-orleans

Horror Noire: Blacks in American Horror Films from the 1890s to Present
www.amazon.com/Horror-Noire-Blacks-American-Present/dp/0415880203

Why Can’t Black Witches Get Some Respect in Popular Culture?
www.vulture.com/2017/10/black-witches-why-cant-they-get-respect-in-pop-culture.html

The Appropriation of Magic: How White People Demonised Voodoo
brizomagazine.com/2020/06/15/the-appropriation-of-magic-how-white-people-demonised-voodoo/

200 Years of Forgetting: Hushing up the Haitian Revolution
www.jstor.org/stable/40027220?seq=1

The Haiti Reader: History, Culture, Politics
www.dukeupress.edu/the-haiti-reader

Yorùbá Influences on Haitian Vodou and New Orleans Voodoo
www.jstor.org/stable/40034365

From 'Voodooism' to 'Vodou': Changing a US Library of Congress Subject Heading
www.jstor.org/stable/41949200

Perceptions of New Orleans Voodoo: Sin, Fraud, Entertainment, and Religion
www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/nr.2002.6.1.86

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