Master of Arts (MA)
Date of Defense
This study argues that as far as Haitian immigrants in Miami are concerned, issues of identity and health are interconnected. This stems from a Haitian understanding that sees health as the totality of wellbeing—material and spiritual. These two concerns merged in the creation of Halouba Hounfo, a ritual space in Little Haiti, where Haitian immigrants meet to produce and perform identity through Vodou ritual practices and meet their health needs at the same time.
Using ethnography, the study traces the origins of Halouba, identifies the actors involved in its creation and the ritual practices performed there. It also analyzes how the rituals facilitate the integration of the group and produce health for them at the same time. As Haitians migrate to America, Vodou is becoming more relevant in their lives, even for American born Haitians because of the pressing need to respond to questions of identity and health.
Dennis, Dorcas, "Houngas and Mambos of the Diaspora: The Role of Vodou Ritual Specialists in Group Re-integration, Identity Creation and the Production of Health among Haitians in Little Haiti" (2012). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 589.