Investigating the syncretism of Catholicism and voodoo in New Orleans
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Maranise, Anthony M. J.
This paper discusses the syncretism of both Catholicism and Voodoo in New Orleans and explains how the adaptable Catholicism of New Orleans provides ample support for the growth rather than repression of Voodoo. Among the shared elements between Catholicism and Voodoo that permit syncretism, I discuss three means which scholarship and my own field research in New Orleans continuously reaffirm: the reliance on ritual to facilitate liturgical practices, the veneration of lesser intermediaries, and a desire for intimate union with the divine. An examination of the elements that permit syncretism lead to a conclusion that the presence of Voodoo in New Orleans is as a direct result from syncretism with Catholicism and that Catholicism in New Orleans actually serves as an assistance to the continuation of Voodoo rather than an impediment.
Maranise, Anthony M. J. (2012), Investigating the syncretism of Catholicism and voodoo in New Orleans. Journal of Religion & Society, 14.
Rabbi Myer and Dorothy Kripke Center, Creighton University
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