Wednesday, September 06, 2006

J'Ouvert

"The practice of defending oneself against spirits and other dangers during Carnival is directly related to the power of the masquerade to transform the masker, to remove him- or herself from the corporeal plane. That is the seriousness of a Carnival mas' well played. This danger in masquerade recalls the Trinidadian tale of the Soucouyant, an airborne, vampiric demoness whose form of locomotion is as a ball of flame. The Soucouyant transforms into this creature from her human form by peeling off her skin and hiding at the base of a silk cotton tree. The way to defeat the Soucouyant is to find her skin and sprinkle it with salt. The salt prevents the demon from returning to her human form, which she must do before daybreak or else die. In the early morning you can hear her crying out, asking, 'Jouvay? Jou paka ouvay?' Has the day broken?"

Carnival and the Formation of a Caribbean Transnation

2 comments:

SheldonWaithe said...

Also, if you leave a bowl of rice at the bottom of the bed of the Soucouyant's intended victim, the Soucouyant is forced to count each grain of rice to completion instead of preying upon said victim. Obviously it would be foolish to leave a few grains as opposed to a few hundred as this will force the creature to count grains until daybreak. It does not matter if the rice is long grain or basmati...

Dylan said...

does great wall, egg fried rice work too?