By Kristine Juncker

ISBN-10: 0813049709

ISBN-13: 9780813049700

“Challenges the reader in provocative new methods. issues to the salient name to motion awarded through neighborhood Santería and Espiritismo arts, ritual, functionality, and different cultural varieties in addressing center questions of historical past, legacy, and new beginnings.”—Suzanne Preston Blier, writer of Royal Arts of Africa


“A a lot wanted examine of the way within which the non secular paintings of ladies is a primary size of Afro-Cuban non secular ritual, either within the private and non-private spheres.”—Michelle Gonzalez Maldonado, writer of Afro-Cuban Theology


From a plantation in Havana Province within the Eighties to a non secular heart in Spanish Harlem within the Sixties, this ebook profiles 4 generations of girls from one Afro-Cuban spiritual relations. the ladies have been hooked up by way of their fashionable roles as leaders within the religions they practiced and the dramatic ritual art they created. every one was once a medium in Espiritismo—communicating with useless ancestors for assistance or insight—and additionally a santera, or priest of Santería, who may well have interaction the oricha pantheon.

Kristine Juncker argues that via developing paintings for multiple faith those ladies shatter the preferred assumption that Afro-Caribbean religions are specific enterprises. The portraiture, sculptures, and images in Afro-Cuban spiritual Arts provide infrequent and noteworthy glimpses into the rituals and iconography of Espiritismo and Santería. Santería altars are heavily guarded, restricted to initiates, and usually destroyed upon the demise of the santera whereas Espiritismo artifacts are hardly thought of precious adequate to go on. the original and protean cultural legacy targeted right here finds how ritual artwork turned well known imagery, sparked a much broader discussion approximately tradition inheritance, attracted new practitioners, and enabled Afro-Cuban non secular expression to blow up internationally.


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Other scholars revealed a bias toward the exclusive discourse of only one belief system. Only recently have scholars begun to consider hybridity and interreligious dialogue as vital to the expansion of the modern Afro-Cuban religious-arts movement. Fernando Ortiz, Part 1: Los Negros Brujos, or The Black Sorcerers The Cuban ethnologist Fernando Ortiz called attention to Afro-Cuban religious studies in his first book, Los negros brujos, written between 1902 and 1905. 4 The resultant book was published in 1906 and reissued for wider distribution in 1917.

Ortiz had even played a role in facilitating the publication of Lachatañeré’s early work. However, important follow-up pieces by Lachatañeré remained unpublished, or were accepted only by less prestigious presses. S. presses. 59 In this period, Lachatañeré achieved a number of scholarly coups that probably drew Ortiz’s ire. Lachatañeré’s 1942 book, Manual de Santería, claimed to be the first positive and authoritative introduction to Afro-Cuban theological beliefs and public-ritual practices. Indeed, the book’s very title conveyed Lachatañeré’s desire to write the most comprehensive guide on Religious Pluralism and the Afro-Cuban Ritual-Arts Movement, 1899–1969 · 27 Santería to that time.

22 In this passage, Ortiz begins to make an important connection between Afro-Cuban religions and the Espiritismo movement, noting that, “in the first place,” the most suspicious spiritual workers are those in contact with the brujo (and therefore, black) and thereby relegating “white diviners” to “second place” in his racial hierarchy. Ortiz’s central problem with the espiritistas, however, is that, “in general, . . ”23 In The Black Sorcerers, Ortiz argued that Spiritist leaders affiliated with African religious expression should be detained and supervised by the police, but he did not advocate that Espiritismo altars be seized.

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