Looking for Laveau: the mythology of Marie Laveau in and out of the archive

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Morgan Carter (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Tara Green

Abstract: The purpose of this work is to engage with the proliferation of the myth of Marie Laveau, the nineteenth-century Voodoo figure of New Orleans, Louisiana and its multiple potentialities as both a tool of investment in whiteness as a form of intellectual property as well as a subject for myth as uplift, refusal, and resistance in terms of southern black womanhood and the critically imaginary. In this work, I create a trajectory of work that has endeavored to “recover” Laveau within institutionalized forms of knowing, specifically taking to task projects of recovery that attempt to present Laveau as a figure of strong leadership for women through institutionalized spaces and forms of knowledge, such as the archive while simultaneously dismissing other, “nonacademic” proliferations of the Laveau myth. This thesis serves to decenter the research, reading, and writing of the Laveau mythology as within the academy, which ostensibly serves white and normative generated and centered ways of knowing, identifying, and articulating, in favor of a methodology that accounts for cultural forms of mythologies that center memory, lineage, and communal identification. Through this critical work, I hope to supply a critical imaginary of what a Creole/Cajun southern feminism would look like, and how it is deeply intertwined with gendered and racialized nuances that are specific to region and community.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2019
Gender, Laveau, Louisiana, Mythology, Race
Laveau, Marie, $d 1794-1881 $x In literature
Mambos (Vodou) $z Louisiana $z New Orleans $x Historiography
Women, Black $z Louisiana $z New Orleans $x Historiography
Feminism and literature

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