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The New Orleans Voodoo Handbook

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Table of Contents

Introduction Part One History 1 Born on the Bayou: The Rise of New Orleans 2 From Saint-Domingue to Washington: Revolution Comes to Louisiana 3 King Cotton, Lady Liberty, and Jim Crow 4 The (Re)creation of "New Orleans Voodoo" 5 When the Levee Breaks: Hurricane Katrina Part Two Traditions 6 Mardi Gras 7 Music 8 Food 9 Voodoo Temples and Curio Shops 10 Priests, Priestesses, Houngans, Mambos, and Chicken Men Part Three The Spirits 11 The Old Man at the Crossroads: Papa La-Bas 12 The Divine Mother: The Virgin Mary 13 The Great Serpent: Li Grand Zombi 14 The Voodoo Queen: Marie Laveau 15 The Warriors: Joe Feraille, St. Marron, and Yon Sue 16 The Miracle Workers: St. Expidite, St. Jude, and St. Roch 17 The Bringers of Good Fortune: St. Joseph, Assonquer, and John the Conqueror 18 The Indians: Black Hawk and the Black Hawk Spiritual Churches 19 The Roots: The Dead Part Four Practices 20 Candles 21 Oils 22 Spirit Dolls 23 Mojo Hands and Gris-gris Bags 24 Foretelling the Future Part Five Just Visiting or Settling Down 25 Visiting the Big Easy 26 Moving to New Orleans: Triumphs and Tragedies Afterword: Deepwater Horizon and the Indomitable Spirit of Louisiana Part Six Appendices Appendix 1 Great New Orleans Books, Movies, and Television Appendix 2 New Orleans Musicians Appendix 3 Preserving New Orleans Notes Index

About the Author

Kenaz Filan (Houngan Coquille du Mer) was initiated in Societe la Belle Venus in March 2003 after 10 years of solitary service to the lwa. A frequent contributor to PanGaia, Planet Magazine, and Widdershins, Filan is the former managing editor of newWitch magazine and lives in Short Hills, New Jersey.


"The New Orleans Voodoo Handbook is about so much more than Voodoo. Using Voodoo as the lens through which the city of New Orleans is viewed, Kenaz Filan weaves a tale equal parts history, tourist guide, and introduction to Voodoo as unique as the city itself. Filan touches on topics as diverse as the evolution of race relations within the city and the proper use of ritual oils. If you are planning a visit to the city or just want a fresh perspective on a fascinating American city, pick up this book." * Witches' Almanac, December 2013 * "I recommend The New Orleans Voodoo Handbook for those who want to learn more about the culture and beginnings of the spiritual tradition. " * Pagan Book Reviews, August 2013 * "Filan does an excellent job in presenting good information, and offering caveats for the rest. And while the Handbook is not a spell book, the information provided on the spirits, saints, oils and candle magick, plus the best explanation of what a voodoo doll is (and isn't), is a wonderful entry into this work for anyone who wishes to pursue it further. Fun and informative, The New Orleans Voodoo Handbook is a great resource for anyone interested in this style of magick, or who's planning a `magickal vacation' in the Crescent City" * Leni Hester, Witches and Pagans Magazine, October 2012 * "Plenty of practical prayers and recipes follow, as well as instructions for divination, candle-workings and concocting magical oils, etc. Overall, this is a well-researched and highly engaging read." * Frater Puck, Behutet Magazine * "One reviewer said The New Orleans Voodoo Handbook?is quite simply the best book on New Orleans Voodoo I have ever read. I would amend that to,?it's the best book on New Orleans and Voodoo I've ever read." * Psychic-Magic, November 2011 * "Well researched, well written, and a delight to read, I highly recommend this to readers who want to understand how and why New Orleans voodoo is different from the island varieties." * FacingNorth.net, October 2011 * "A winning blend of urban and religious history from famed New Orleans Vodou priest Filan. . . . A unique supplementary travel guide for anyone planning a trip to NOLA or readers interested in the city's rich voodoo tradition." * Kirkus Reviews, August 2011 * "To understand a spiritual practice one must understand both the history and culture in which it flourished. In The New Orleans Voodoo Handbook, Kenaz Filan begins with the critical eye of a historian before investigating New Orleans Voodoo as both a spiritual science and religion. He strips away myth and fallacy, leaving us with fact, and gives us an insider's view of the faith's deepest mysteries. It is the first book I've read by an experienced houngan dealing with one of the South's most enduring, powerful legacies. This volume is a welcome addition to both the casual historian's and active practitioner's library." * Ocha'ni Lele, author of Diloggun Tales of the Natural World, Teachings of the Sateri * "Kenaz Filan's new book is quite simply the best book on New Orleans Voodoo I have ever read. It is extremely well researched detailing spirits, practitioners, and rituals, that are well known in the Crescent City, but which have never been covered in a book like this before. Kenaz takes great pains to show that Voodoo of New Orleans is a unique system of magic distinct from, but with relations to both Haitian Vodou and Hoodoo, and provide a much needed window into the ever evolving magic of America's most occult city." * Jason Miller, author of Protection & Reversal Magick: A Witch's Defense Manual *

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