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35. Death by Voodoo

35. Death by Voodoo

Now for an interlude.

We’ve been talking about Voodoo for a few segments now and the undead for a few more segments than that.

Why not look at both of them together?

Voodoo practitioners (based on Dr. Ducasse, I’d attribute this more to Bokor) are said to have the ability to kill via supernatural means, cursing their victims and causing all sorts of unpleasantness through the invocation of devils and demons. There even said to be able to kill their victims through curses. One of the first recorded articles on Voodoo Death was written in 1942 by Walter B Cannon (who developed the concept of homeostasis). Walter’s research is the basis on which much of the modern understanding of physiological fear response is based.

While the majority of his paper can be written off as anecdotal and would likely not have made it through academic scrutiny today, what is most interesting is that his theory that Voodoo Death may have resulted from psychological fear response has only been further validated and extrapolated upon over time.

This is the same Walter Cannon that developed the concept of “fight or flight,” so it’s not too surprising that this piece of research holds up even 60 years later.

This is a fantastic article for anyone who has ever wondered whether they have anything to fear from a “curse.” I’ll give you a hint passed along from Winston Churchill, “[the] only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

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