Popular Culture Review Vol. 24, No. 2, Summer 2013 - Page 33

Correction of a Falsified Image 29 along to their friends and family members and, by doing so, help to promote a better understanding o f the religion. Second, that tourists coming to New Orleans have the desire to leam more about “the only Afro-Catholic religion to [have emerged] in North America” (Long, New Orleans 93) through, for example, (seif) guided visits o f the Voodoo museum, an educational “Voodoo tour” offered by one o f the city’s tour Companies, or an appointment with one o f New Orleans’ initiated Voodoo priestesses. No matter which o f these options will be chosen, the outcome will be the same: the realization that “Hollywood Voodoo” aims at creating fear, but New Orleans’ Voodoo desires to establish harmony and peace within oneself and with the other through prayer and worship. Tulane University, New Orleans Alexandra Reuber Notes 1 Derived ffom “the Yoruba word l ’awo, meaning ‘mystery,’” the spelling of Iwa differs greatly among voodoo followers and researchers (Anderson, Hoodoo 33). Consequently, different spellings will occur in this article depending on the sources used. The meaning and importance of Iwa within the Voodoo tradition will find elaboration on page 4 and in endnote 8 of this article. 2 Lwa are to be understood as lesser deities and spirits that serve as intermediaries between man and Voodoo’s supreme deity, the Bondye. 3 The inclusion of veve in Voodoo ceremonies derived ffom Affican and Indian traditions, which, as Robert Montilus points out in his Etudes sur le vodou (1966), “ont ete influences par la magie europeenne du Moyen äge” (were influenced by European magical beliefs o f the Middle Ages) (Montilus 43). 4 All translations given in this work are my own if not indicated otherwise. 5 La danse loa is a sacred dance that is closely linked with Voodoo. According to Salgado “on pourrait presque definir le Vodou comme une religion dansee” (we could almost call Voodoo a dancing religion) (36). 6 Explanation on the “Ancestral Altar” has been provided by the Virtual Voodoo Temple. 2009-2012. http://www.planetvoodoo.com/voodootemple/ancestral-altar.htm (accessed August 30, 2102). 7 Color symbolism is of high importance in the Voodoo tradition. The color white, chosen for the candle at the top of the altar, has positive connotations and represents spiritual cleansing, healing, assisting others, and blessing (Alvarado, Voodoo Hoodoo 56). The blue candle on the left fülfills the function of putting the believer at peace, and of providing him with “strong and gentle energies” (Alvarado, Voodoo Hoodoo 57).