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  • Acknowledgments  ix
    Introduction: Enter the Igbodu  1
    Part I. Vodou
    1. Of Dreams and Night Mares: Vodou Women Queering the Body  27
    2. Hector Hyppolite èL Même: Between Queer Fetishization and Vodou Self-Portraiture  49
    Part II. Lucumí/Santería
    3. A Chronology of Queer Lucumí Scholarship: Degeneracy, Ambivalence, Transcorporeality  103
    4. Lucumí Diasporic Ethnography: Fran, Cabrera, Lam  133
    Part III. Candomblé
    5. Queer Candomblé Scholarship and Dona Flor's S/Exua/lity  181
    6. Transatlantic Waters of Oxalá: Pierre Verger, Mário de Andrade, and Candomblé in Europe  212
    Conclusion: Transcripturality  251
    Notes  255
    References  261
  • “An intellectual and linguistic tour de force, Roberto Strongman's study on trance possession channels a love letter from the orishas to the futures of Afro-Atlantic religious studies, queer of color critique, Latinx and Latin American studies, and comparative literature. Queering Black Atlantic Religions is more than a book: it is a major, formidable achievement that will touch many and illustrate how scholarship can be an expressive and radical transformational practice.” — Carlos Decena

    Queering Black Atlantic Religions provides a new theoretical language for the fields of African diasporic religions and gender and sexuality studies, all the while setting a new standard in comparative literary and cultural studies in the twenty-first century. Using an eclectic and unique cultural studies methodology, displaying proficiency in half a dozen languages, and field work experience in a similarly impressive number of research sites, Roberto Strongman provides an advanced exploration of the creolized religions of the greater Caribbean cultural zone.” — Carol Boyce Davies

    Queering Black Atlantic Religions closely reads an astonishingly circum-Atlantic and polyglot array of canonical films, paintings, photographs, novels, and ethnographies through the lens of the Afro-Atlantic religions of spirit possession. Roberto Strongman revisits the theme that these religions disrupt the conventional binaries of Western gender identity and apprehend the self through metaphors of horsemanship and vessels occupied by spirits as multiple as they are mobile. He also shows that, while many Latin American and European artists, authors, and critics have exploited the image of the black to liberate themselves from their native cultural constraints, they often come to internalize Afro-Atlantic spirits and configurations of the self.” — J. Lorand Matory

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  • Description

    In Queering Black Atlantic Religions Roberto Strongman examines Haitian Vodou, Cuban Lucumí/Santería, and Brazilian Candomblé to demonstrate how religious rituals of trance possession allow humans to understand themselves as embodiments of the divine. In these rituals, the commingling of humans and the divine produces gender identities that are independent of biological sex. As opposed to the Cartesian view of the spirit as locked within the body, the body in Afro-diasporic religions is an open receptacle. Showing how trance possession is a primary aspect of almost all Afro-diasporic cultural production, Strongman articulates transcorporeality: a black, trans-Atlantic understanding of the human psyche, soul, and gender as multiple, removable, and external to the body.

    About The Author(s)

    Roberto Strongman is Associate Professor of Black Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
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