Cover

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Contents

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xii

It is true, as many have noted before, that writing is a corporate enterprise. And so there are individuals and institutions, foundations and family members who . . .

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Introduction

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pp. 1-23

I am remembering Reema’s boy—the one with the pear-shaped head.1 Once a child of Willow Springs, he returned to the small island off the coast of Georgia and . . .

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1. Kongo in the Lowcountry

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pp. 24-41

Writing in Slaves in the Family, Edward Ball details the arrival, in 1736, of a young woman in South Carolina. She had been sold as a slave in West- Central Africa . . .

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2. Saline Sacraments, Water Ritual, and the Spirits of the Deep: Christian Conversion in Kongo and along the Sea Islands of the Deep South

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pp. 42-104

Sarah was a slave; and a dutiful one at that. When Sarah spoke, she comported herself with all of the deference demanded by the master class: “‘Your servant, . . .

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3. Minkisi, Conjure Bags, and the African Atlantic Religious Complex

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pp. 105-145

Th e idea of the fetish derives from the medieval Portuguese term feitiço, which referred to sorcery or magical arts. In its earliest use, the term articulated . . .

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4. Burial Markers and Other Remembrances of the Dead

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pp. 146-181

During the era of the slave trade, Kongolese notions of the soul maintained that the body existed as a container for a composite set of inhabiting souls that, though . . .

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Conclusion

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pp. 183-189

Th e preceding chapters propose the development of an African Atlantic religious complex that developed during the era of slavery and the slave trade. Linked . . .

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Epilogue

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pp. 191-195

Th e people of Willow Springs have been celebrating Candle Walk on the twenty-second night of December for some time now, though nobody really knows why . . .

Notes

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pp. 197-234

Selected Bibliography

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pp. 235-252

Index

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pp. 253-258