Just as surely as Haiti is possessed by the gods and spirits of vaudun voodoo , the island possessed Katherine Dunham when she first went there in 1936 to study dance and ritual In this book, Dunham reveals how her anthropological research, her work in dance, and her fascination for the people and cults of Haiti worked their spell, catapulting her into experiences that she was often lucky to survive Here Dunham tells how the island came to be possessed by the demons of voodoo and other cults imported from various parts of Africa, as well as by the deep class divisions, particularly between blacks and mulattos, and the political hatred still very much in evidence today Full of the flare and suspense of immersion in a strange and enchanting culture, Island Possessed is also a pioneering work in the anthropology of dance and a fascinating document on Haitian politics and voodoo....
|Publisher||:||University of Chicago Press June 25, 1994|
|Number of Pages||:||287 pages|
|File Size||:||775 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Island Possessed Reviews
As I read different books about the history of Haiti, I came upon Island Possessed, an interesting book written by a very interesting and unique woman, Katherine Dunham. The book is primarily about her first visit to the island in 1936 as part of her anthropology study into the dance of the people of the African Diaspora. Soon, she becomes initiated into Voodoo and gives a compelling account of her initiation ceremony.
A quite detailed account of life in Haiti from the late 1930's through to the late 60's seen through the eyes of a foreigner as well as very detailed account of initiation into voodoo. The book finishes during the era of Papa Doc so it provides an insight in to Haiti over 50 years ago . The author kept an open mind on all issues, whether politics, voodoo, Haitian history and slavery and the book is refreshingly free of opinions and judgement. It is very well written and it is obvious that Dunham liked Haiti , obviously so much so that she bought a property there.I enjoyed it thoroughly and recommend it to anyone who has an interest in Haiti and enjoys reading a well written book. One further note, when reading the part of the book devoted to voodoo you will need to constantly use the glossary for an explanation of the language used.
Thankful for this Jewel! I highly recommend this book for those seeking experience of Voodoo
Most remember her as great dancer but her literary skills were just as impressive. This limited biography of her life is an excellent introduction into the inquisitive nature of her mind and how she opened up her life to new people and experiences. The latter part of the book is devoted into her exploration of Voodoo Religion and is Eye opening but difficult to believe, I guess I am not as open minded as Ms. Dunham. This is a very good read.
Want to understand? Read this!
Got the book very quickly. Came in same condition as expected. Will do business again.
Manbo Dunham is a good writer and her prose flows as she talks about her sojourn in Haiti and the religious and political and other figures she interacts with there. This book is of especial interest for her description of the 3-day initiation called the lave tet [or sevis tet or kanzwe depending on where you are and who you ask], which is less well known than the more popular modern kanzo rite initiation centered in Potoprens and other urban centers in Haiti and the Diaspora.