What's Haitian Vodou? (Part One) with Professor Eziaku Nwokocha
A spiritual practice that has a divinity dedicated to the protection of lesbians?! Tell us more! This week, for our Pride Beyond Borders series, we’re exploring the world of Haitian Vodou in a special two-part episode. In this first half, Professor Eziaku Nwokocha introduces us to this African diasporic religion, and Haitian history. In part two, out tomorrow, we’ll step into the world of Manbo Maude’s temples in Haiti and the US to learn about Haitian Vodou rituals and fashions, and what this practice has to do with queerness.
Curious for more? Check out the first episode from our Pride Beyond Borders series, all about global drag cultures, with Professor Kareem Khubchandani.
Eziaku Nwokocha is an Assistant Professor at the University of Miami. She is a scholar of Africana religions with expertise in the ethnographic study of Vodou in Haiti and the Haitian diaspora. Her research is grounded in a thorough understanding of religions in Africa, the Caribbean, and the United States, in gender and sexuality studies, visual and material culture and Africana Studies generally.
She is the author of Vodou en Vogue: Fashioning Black Divinities in Haiti and the United States (University of North Carolina Press, 2023), which is an ethnographic study of fashion, spirit possession, and gender and sexuality in contemporary Haitian Vodou, exploring Black religious communities through their innovative ceremonial practices. This book is featured within the series Where Religion Lives.
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