Lecture by Liza McAlister

Liza McAlister, Professor of Religion at Wesleyan University, presents: “The Militarization of Prayer and Evangelical Spiritual Warfare in Haiti
At 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 3, 2018, in Kemeny 006.

A network of global evangelicals understands the world to be a spiritual battleground in which they are the chosen warriors in Christ’s army. This talk draws on recent ethnographic fieldwork to look at how American prayer warriors train for the spiritual battlefield.  It describes how Americans engage evangelicals in Haiti to fight against the creole religious tradition called Vodou, which they consider a Satanic enemy. Spiritual warfare theologians and warriors imagine an invisible, more real realm with spiritual entities and legal codes that, once understood, can give a believer access to the same powers as Jesus Christ himself.

Elizabeth McAlister is Professor of Religion at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, whose research focuses on Afro-Caribbean religions, neo-pentecostalism, and race theory, with a focus on Haiti. McAlister is author of Rara! Vodou, Power and Performance in Haiti and its Diaspora, a book and CD ( University of California Press, 2002) and co-editor with Henry Goldschmidt of  Race, Nation, and Religion in the Americas (Oxford University Press, 2004). Most of her published articles can be found online at: http://emcalister.faculty.wesleyan.edu/