By Carolyn Morrow Long
Against the backdrop of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century New Orleans, A New Orleans Voudou Priestess: The Legend and truth of Marie Laveau disentangles the advanced threads of the legend surrounding the well-known Voudou priestess. based on mysterious, oft-told stories, Laveau was once a rare star whose sorcery-fueled effect prolonged greatly from slaves to upper-class whites. a few money owed declare that she led the "orgiastic" Voudou dances in Congo sq. and at the beaches of Lake Pontchartrain, saved a big snake named Zombi, and was once the proprietress of an notorious residence of assignation. even though mythical for an strange mixture of religious energy, attractiveness, air of secrecy, showmanship, intimidation, and sensible company feel, she additionally was once recognized for her kindness and charity, nursing yellow fever sufferers and ministering to condemned prisoners, and her devotion to the Roman Catholic Church. the real tale of Marie Laveau, although significantly much less flamboyant than the legend, is both compelling.
In setting apart verifiable truth from semi-truths and entire fabrication, lengthy explores the original social, political, and criminal environment during which the lives of Marie Laveau's African and eu ancestors grew to become intertwined. adjustments in New Orleans engendered by means of French and Spanish rule, the Louisiana buy, the Civil struggle, Reconstruction, and Jim Crow segregation affected seven generations of Laveau's kinfolk, from enslaved great-grandparents of natural African blood to great-grandchildren who have been legally categorized as white. at the same time, lengthy examines the evolution of recent Orleans Voudou, which until eventually lately has been overlooked by way of scholars.
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A New Orleans Voudou Priestess: The Legend and Reality of Marie Laveau by Carolyn Morrow Long