Born of Blood and Fire. On the Origins, Evolution, History and Practices of the Haitian Petwo Rite. Richard WARD.

Born of Blood and Fire. On the Origins, Evolution, History and Practices of the Haitian Petwo Rite.

UK: Scarlet Imprint, 2021. First Edition, Standard hardcover. Hardcover. Octavo. xii + 179pp + 32pp b&w art photo insert at center. Publisher's bright red cloth with vèvè of Erzuli Dantò foiled in white on front board, black and white block titling to spine, textured black endpages. The standard hardcover edition of 725 hand-numbered copies. From Scarlet Imprint: "Ward offers a study of the origins, history, practices, evolution and influence of the Petwo rite that was pivotal in the Haitian slave revolts and subsequent revolution. Ward draws on over 20 years of contact with Vodou initiates to cut through the sensationalism, and carefully addresses the misconceptions of Western practitioners to tell the story of Petwo as the unifying spiritual and magical impetus to the establishment of the first Black Republic in the Western hemisphere. From that time onward, Vodou and the fate of Haiti, both culturally and politically, would be intertwined. Petwo shares the same West African roots as the Palo traditions in Cuba and the Kimbanda lineages of Brazil, but aspects of Roman Catholicism, European Freemasonry, grimoire and Kabbalistic traditions, as well as the magic of the indigenous Taino people, have all been incorporated into the rite. Contents are: Foreword: I Addressing the Stereotype & Other Preliminaries, Misconceptions of a darker strain, The Vodou language; Perceiving Petwo/. Part II: The Religio-Magical Origins of the Black Republic; Traditions torn from Africa; Spirits reforged in the New World; Rebels with a cause. Part III: Serving with Both Hands; Initiation, servis and sosyetè; The hand that steals from God; Shades of light and dark. A sorcerous celebration of remembrance. Part IV: The Evolution of the Petwo Tree; Preserving sacred roots; Petwo quantum leap; The living tradition.Appendices: Many branches from many roots Songs for the Petwo lwa; On the origins of the Haitian bòko. Bibliography. Richard Ward examines the origins, character and syncretism of the principal Petwo lwa, and discusses the figures of the oungan, manbo and bòkò, and the semi-legendary founders of Petwo. The book also covers initiation rites; secret societies; the Rara and Kanaval festivals; the lougawou (werewolf) and animal transformation; zombi; vèvè, of which 32 are illustrated; pwen; the magic of the paket; the sorcery of wanga, and traditional songs for the lwa. The rites, pantheon and influence of Petwo now extend far beyond the island of its birth, and Ward’s study gives an account of the cult from its origins to the wild esoteric Vodou of Michael Bertiaux and the quantum Vodou of Dr Reginald Crosley; but also shows that the rites responsible for Petwo still exist in their original form in parts of rural Haiti. NEW in Fine condition (no dust jacket issued). Item #69612

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