Source Publication (e.g., journal title)

Africana Studies

Publication Date

January 2010

Abstract

The ways that some Haitian Protestants view of Vodou and the importance of karactè (character) have emerged as two interrelated and fundamental aspects of Haitian Protestant worldview within a transnational social field. First, many Haitian Protestants believe the practice of Vodou since the Bwa Kayiman ceremony is the main reason why Haiti is mired in a socioeconomic crisis. Second, the development of a Haitian individual’s karactè through Haitian Protestantism is seen by a growing number of Haitian Protestants in the Bahamas, Haiti and the United States as a remedy that can transform the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere into a viable nation-state. In this essay, I offer ethnographic examples of these two features of Haitian Protestant worldview to demonstrate the centrality of these beliefs in the formation and maintenance of a religious identity that is growing in Haiti and in Haitian diasporas in the region.

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