Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
The Gift That Keeps on Giving - Leaked Sony Email Challenges Denzel Washington's Overseas Box Office Appeal The Gift That Keeps on Giving - Leaked Sony Email Challenges Denzel Washington's Overseas Box Office Appeal Backlash Against New VH1 Series 'Sorority Sisters' Backlash Against New VH1 Series 'Sorority Sisters' Tessa Thompson Books Female Lead Role in Ryan Coogler's 'Creed' Opposite Michael B. Jordan Tessa Thompson Books Female Lead Role in Ryan Coogler's 'Creed' Opposite Michael B. Jordan Samuel L. Jackson Has His Own Challenge for Other Celebrites in Reaction to "Racist Police" (Watch) Samuel L. Jackson Has His Own Challenge for Other Celebrites in Reaction to "Racist Police" (Watch) Why Aren’t We Talking About the Sexual Assault in 'Beyond the Lights'? Why Aren’t We Talking About the Sexual Assault in 'Beyond the Lights'? Page to Screen Possibilities for Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's 'Americanah' (Lupita Nyong'o, David Oyelowo Starring) Page to Screen Possibilities for Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's 'Americanah' (Lupita Nyong'o, David Oyelowo Starring) David Oyelowo Joins Lupita Nyong’o in 'Americanah' Film Adaptation David Oyelowo Joins Lupita Nyong’o in 'Americanah' Film Adaptation Leaked Sony Emails Reveal Interest in Destiny's Child Biopic + Immersive Kanye West Feature Film Experience Leaked Sony Emails Reveal Interest in Destiny's Child Biopic + Immersive Kanye West Feature Film Experience Weekend B.O. Dec. 12-14 (So How’s That Boycott Working for Ya?) Weekend B.O. Dec. 12-14 (So How’s That Boycott Working for Ya?) What Sony Pictures Chief Amy Pascal Should Do if She Sincerely Wants to Make Amends What Sony Pictures Chief Amy Pascal Should Do if She Sincerely Wants to Make Amends Ava DuVernay Earns Her Way Into the History Books - First Black Woman Director to Be Nominated for a Golden Globe Award Ava DuVernay Earns Her Way Into the History Books - First Black Woman Director to Be Nominated for a Golden Globe Award Woody Allen Says He Won’t Hire a Black Actor Unless the Role Calls for One... Whatever That Means Woody Allen Says He Won’t Hire a Black Actor Unless the Role Calls for One... Whatever That Means Will You Join The Boycott 'Exodus' Movement? (Or You Don't Care) Will You Join The Boycott 'Exodus' Movement? (Or You Don't Care) My MoviePass Experience - What Works & What Could Be Improved (The Movie Theater Subscription Service) My MoviePass Experience - What Works & What Could Be Improved (The Movie Theater Subscription Service) Co-Screenwriter of 'Noah' Explains Why There Are No Black People Or POC In The Film Co-Screenwriter of 'Noah' Explains Why There Are No Black People Or POC In The Film Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Will Smith Explains Why Willow Smith Dropped Out Of 'Annie' Remake Will Smith Explains Why Willow Smith Dropped Out Of 'Annie' Remake Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Go 'Inside The Coven' For Voodoo In New Orleans, Ahead Of 'American Horror Story' Premiere

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act October 2, 2013 at 6:24PM

References to Voodoo in popular culture are plenty, especially here in the West. From pin-filled/punctured dolls, to witch doctors, possession and animal sacrifice, these are likely some of what many would immediately think of, if asked to describe what Voodoo is. Some might also attribute it to a specific place - usually the countries of the Caribbean, like Haiti and Jamaica, or the southeastern United States, especially New Orleans. And while some of these beliefs are indeed tangentially related, others are stereotypes that have little or nothing to do with Voodoo itself, even though seemingly embraced by the zeitgeist, thanks in part to Hollywood schooling.Voodoo, as we know it, and that will be of some significance during the upcoming 3rd season of FX's American Horror Story (Coven), set in the aforementioned New Orleans, can trace its origins to a slavery-era coalescing of the assortment of beliefs and practices brought over from different parts of primarily Western Africa.
3
Angela Bassett As Marie Laveau
Angela Bassett As Marie Laveau

References to Voodoo in popular culture are plenty, especially here in the West. From pin-filled/punctured dolls, to witch doctors, possession and animal sacrifice, these are likely some of what many would immediately think of, if asked to describe what Voodoo is. 


Some might also attribute it to a specific place - usually the countries of the Caribbean, like Haiti and Jamaica, or the southeastern United States, especially New Orleans. 

And while some of these beliefs are indeed tangentially related, others are stereotypes that have little or nothing to do with Voodoo itself, even though seemingly embraced by the zeitgeist, thanks in part to Hollywood schooling.

Voodoo, as we know it, and that will be of some significance during the upcoming 3rd season of FX's American Horror Story (Coven), set in the aforementioned New Orleans, can trace its origins to a slavery-era coalescing of the assortment of beliefs and practices brought over from different parts of primarily Western Africa. 

The character Angela Bassett plays in the Coven - Marie Laveau, a practioner of Voodoo who lived in the 1800s, who was called "the Voodoo queen of New Orleans" - is indeed credited with being a unifying force in helping Voodoo penetrate New Orleans culture.

We'll have to wait to find out just how involved Bassett's Laveau character will be in Coven's main plot, when the new season arrives on October 9 at 10 PM ET/PT on FX - exactly a week from today.

Producers of the series have said that Coven will explore "themes of race and oppression and family," as executive producer Tim Minear puts it.

Here's a breakdown of the season, if you missed it previously:

It's been over 300 years since the Salem witch trials. Those who remain are almost extinct and in danger again. A school has opened in New Orleans to teach protection to the young. The long-absent Supreme arrives to also protect the new students and their secrets. The themes include witches, slavery, witchcraft versus Voodoo, incest, and more. This season will be set in modern day and the 1830s.

Gabourey Sidibe also joins this season's cast, although we don't yet know what her role is. From the footage we've seen thus far, she's likely one of the students attending the school that opens in New Orleans, as described in the above breakdown.

In a new behind-the-scenes video, FX takes audiences "Inside The Coven" as the clip is called, to provide some background on New Orleans Voodoo, ahead of next week's season 3 premiere of American Horror Story: Coven. Until I actually watch episodes of the season, I can't offer any commentary on how exactly Voodoo is incorporated into the main narrative, and how it will be presented overall.

I certainly hope it doesn't continue Hollywood's typically 1-dimensional *spook* trends.

The 5-minute video, featuring real-life New Orleans practitioners of Voodoo, is embedded below:


This article is related to: Angela Bassett, Gabourey Sidibe, TV News, TV Videos


Shadow & ActNewsletter