SORCERER'S VILLAGE by Hassoldt Davis


Email this review


The American couple whose adventures in French Guiana were first recorded in 1952 in The Jungle and the Damned here report again on primitive customs- this time in French Africa. An exciting and sometimes incredible year filming, sound recording and typing reams of valuable notes is enhanced by a zest for adventure and fun, and warm interest and affection for every porter and potentate they meet. They were equipped with the latest gadgets of scientific jungle life, to say nothing of fireworks and an instrument for causing electric shock. What they succeed in finding out about cannibalism, tribal dances, fetishes, etc. is made part of a narrative of zany personal experience. Mr. Davis is at one point paralyzed by ""black magic"", at another point succeeds in restoring a native chief's sexual powers with a Yankee brand of hypnosis. There's a riotous account of the Davises mistaking a sacred burial ground for an outhouse --- and then making amends. The African backdrop takes in the government powers-that-be, as well as the question of the spread of Communism. Landing square in the middle of Marxist conflict, the Davises show the distortions of the primitive interpretation. This journey into the interior is enriched by the close personal relations between this anthropologist-photographer team and their native bearers. Good for the adventure hungry audience, with curiosity about the ways of peoples.

Publisher: Little, Brown- D.S.& P.