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Caribbean Religious HistoryAn Introduction$
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Ennis B. Edmonds and Michelle A. Gonzalez

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780814722343

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814722343.001.0001

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Creole African Traditions

Creole African Traditions

Santería, Palo Monte, Abakuá, Vodou, and Espiritismo

(p.93) 5 Creole African Traditions
Caribbean Religious History

Ennis B. Edmonds

Michelle A. Gonzalez

NYU Press

The importation of large numbers of Africans for slave labor plantations introduced numerous ethnic groups and their cultural heritages to the Caribbean. This chapter deals with creole religious traditions created by Africans, which have maintained many of their African elements despite being fused with elements encountered in the Caribbean. These include Santería, Palo Monte, Abakuá, and Vodou. Among Spanish colonists, the religio-philosophical system of Espiritismo became an alternative for Catholics who were becoming increasingly alienated from the institutional Catholic Church. The origins, beliefs, and rituals of each religion are discussed in turn. A fundamental aspect of the development of these religious traditions is their African roots, which are central for understanding their transformation into creole traditions in the Americas.

Keywords:   creole African traditions, African slaves, Caribbean religion, Santería, Palo Monte, Abakuá, Vodou, Espiritismo

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