Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Travel Book: Tell My Horse

In honour of Black History Month in the US, put Tell My Horse into your travel book rotation. Written by anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston, well-known African American author of Their Eyes Were Watching God, Tell My Horse is an account of her travels to Haiti and Jamaica in the 1930s to investigate voodoo culture.

The book is decades old, but having spent some time in Haiti in 2003, I know that voodoo beliefs are still very much alive, especially in the rural areas. The book is a fascinating mix of travelogue, anthropological study, and political analysis that is all the more interesting when you take into account the constraints placed on Hurston by her predominantly white audience and patron.

Verdict: Borrow it

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