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Conjure & the black church

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    Preclinical Medicine. Public Health and Epidemiology. Biological Sciences. Computer Science. Earth Sciences and Geography. Engineering and Technology. Environmental Science. History of Science and Technology. In what proved to be one of the most illuminating aspects of the discussion, Dr Stanonis turned his attention to the role played by jazz and blues musicians in giving voice to spiritual beliefs often denied by racial spokesmen.

    Jazz and blues thus became an important platform in the expression of African American foodways. As the twentieth century progressed, both black and white performers embraced conjure with the aim of subverting the traditionally negative associations. These artistic references to conjure paved the way for a closer examination of the supernatural dimension of soul food, as found within recipes.

    Conjure in African American society by Jeffrey Elton Anderson – Qwufua Environment.

    Stanonis recounted several recipes which claimed to ward off police or to win at cards and dice. And if you have any fuss there, put salt on the onion and burn it up. Whilst these conjure practices may on the surface seem like mere superstitions, they were in fact powerful remedies for the African American community during slavery and later, in post-emancipation periods of racial discrimination and unrest.

    In the question and answer session, issues were addressed such as the commercialisation voodoo and soul food on a national and international level. Whilst African American resistance to slavery and discrimination has, in recent decades, received much scholarly attention, Stanonis highlighted an area of study that has remained relatively untapped. By using music to illustrate key aspects of the discussion, Stanonis provided a lively and engaging structure to the presentation and maintained the interest of the audience throughout.

    In fusing together music studies alongside those of religion and African American society and culture, Dr Stanonis facilitated a multi-disciplinary approach to the study of foodways and conjure which, as he demonstrated, in this context came hand in hand. By Rebecca Dunbar. All very welcome! No comments:. Newer Post Older Post Home.