Black Magic: Religion and the African American Conjuring Tradition

Black Magic Religion and the African American Conjuring Tradition Black Magic looks at the origins meaning and uses of Conjure the African American tradition of healing and harming that evolved from African European and American elements from the slavery period

  • Title: Black Magic: Religion and the African American Conjuring Tradition
  • Author: Yvonne Patricia Chireau
  • ISBN: 9780520249882
  • Page: 411
  • Format: Paperback
  • Black Magic looks at the origins, meaning, and uses of Conjure the African American tradition of healing and harming that evolved from African, European, and American elements from the slavery period to well into the twentieth century Illuminating a world that is dimly understood by both scholars and the general public, Yvonne P Chireau describes Conjure and other relateBlack Magic looks at the origins, meaning, and uses of Conjure the African American tradition of healing and harming that evolved from African, European, and American elements from the slavery period to well into the twentieth century Illuminating a world that is dimly understood by both scholars and the general public, Yvonne P Chireau describes Conjure and other related traditions, such as Hoodoo and Rootworking, in a beautifully written, richly detailed history that presents the voices and experiences of African Americans and shows how magic has informed their culture Focusing on the relationship between Conjure and Christianity, Chireau shows how these seemingly contradictory traditions have worked together in a complex and complementary fashion to provide spiritual empowerment for African Americans, both slave and free, living in white America As she explores the role of Conjure for African Americans and looks at the transformations of Conjure over time, Chireau also rewrites the dichotomy between magic and religion With its groundbreaking analysis of an often misunderstood tradition, this book adds an important perspective to our understanding of the myriad dimensions of human spirituality.

    One thought on “Black Magic: Religion and the African American Conjuring Tradition”

    1. I'd never thought I would side with Conservatives, but when it comes to education, maybe a person really can have too much of a good thing. It seems that a lot of scholarship does not make for a good book.If you're looking for a book that treats Conjure, rootwork, hoodoo, and similar practices in a neutral way, this isn't it. It's a book that has been written for an academic audience, and as such, the author seems to attempt to appease a generally secular mindset. She doesn't take her subject se [...]

    2. I'd like to give this a really strong four stars. It's really good. But there are some holes, too. Chireau, for instance, doesn't address Spiritualism among white people at all, so the narrative arc of the 19th century for her seems to be "blacks are regarded as more and more backwards and superstitious as whites become more scientific and practical." Well, yes, kind of, but I wish that had been rendered a little more problematic by a discussion of all the white people running around talking to [...]

    3. I find it really amusing that some reviewers have complained that this book doesn't mentioned White or Native American traditions. It does, but they're not given primary attention. This book centers Blackness. If you're not used to that or not expecting it it'll throw you off a bit, I guess.I thought this was a great read. I learned a lot about US history and about my own assumptions when approaching religious/moral discussions. I liked how it explored the role of Conjure in religion, folklore, [...]

    4. Concise, well thought out, and covering a lot of material. Chireau seems pretty unbiased for a researcher, which is nice. A fascinating subject.

    5. Yvonne Chireau takes you on a thorough journey through the history of traditional magical/traditional practice (referred to throughout as Conjure) within African American communities from their origin in Africa to modern times.While a densely packed read there is a plethora of information and a lot of ground to cover. The author does an admirable job of providing this history in a reasonably chronological order, despite much of it having been passed down through folklore and a wide myriad of sou [...]

    6. Great discussion of african american spirituality and the influences of african traditional religion, esp. the role and significance of conjure tradition in both.

    7. An African-American professor of Religion offers this work to help better grasp the development of Conjure, only the magical practices, from its deep African roots, to early 20th century forms. In the introduction, she refutes Durkheim's oft quoted belief that religion is congregational, and that magic is individual. This concept is ethnocentric, and myopic when it comes to those cultures that magic is an essential part of the community's religious practices. "So closely were magic and religious [...]

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