The serpent and the rainbow book chapter summary

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the serpent and the rainbow book chapter summary

The Serpent and the Rainbow by Wade Davis - Book - Read Online

A scientific investigation and personal adventure story about zombis and the voudoun culture of Haiti by a Harvard scientist. In April , ethnobotanist Wade Davis arrived in Haiti to investigate two documented cases of zombis—people who had reappeared in Haitian society years after they had been officially declared dead and had been buried. Drawn into a netherworld of rituals and celebrations, Davis penetrated the vodoun mystique deeply enough to place zombification in its proper context within vodoun culture. The Serpent and the Rainbow combines anthropological investigation with a remarkable personal adventure to illuminate and finally explain a phenomenon that has long fascinated Americans. He reports his adventures brilliantly, conjuring up characters and settings vividly and creating sinister suspense with the skill of an accomplished novelist. This first-hand account reads like inspired fiction.
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The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988) Movie Review

The Serpent and the Rainbow

At Harvard University. He ended up in Haiti working on a mystery that has intrigued people for years. Davis tried to discover whether there was any truth to the stories that zombis or zombies existed. If zombies were real, Davis wanted to try to explain the science behind the phenomenon. For an academic, Davis proves to be a surprisingly talented writer with a nice ear for dialogue.

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The Serpent and the Rainbow is a book written by ethnobotanist Wade Davis in The victims are then said to be administered a second powder, this one including datura and part of a recently deceased child's brain. The opinions of scientists on this matter range from plausibility to outright crankery. The obvious ethical issues involved with testing the hypothesis have made it something of a moot point. One strong argument against this hypothesis, however, is the fact that analysis of the powder revealed pufferfish venom in quantities far too small to have an effect. Davis originally proposed that it was the neurotoxin in the venom that gave the powder its effect, meaning that at least that part isn't true. On a related note, The TV show MythBusters tested whether someone could survive being buried alive for two hours before being rescued.

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Indeed, it may well have been the first zombie film I saw. From the start, Davis stumbles. It is not an improvement. Take Indiana Jones. Yet in the course of pursuing knowledge, Indy is sometimes reluctantly thrust into situations where he must be daring and dashing…but it is never his outright purpose. We get it.

Not sure what initially compelled me to buy The Serpent and the Rainbow — I get book cravings the way pregnant women get food cravings. Sometimes a topic just overtakes me and I need to have it. In a nutshell, Wade Davis is a Harvard ethnobotanist who takes an assignment to discover the secrets of mysterious zombi he using this spelling in the book poisons and possible antidotes. He was commissioned to travel to Haiti and find out all that he could about the tradition of zombification, because his financial backers were convinced that it held the key to advancements in Western medicine — a substance that could induce a death-like condition, slowing the metabolism of a person could be an alternative to anesthesia and would revolutionize modern surgery. Davis traverses the country, speaking to and becoming close with locals — psychiatrists, government officials, voodoo priests, presidents of secret societies. The book is divided into three parts. He was trying to understand the deep, underlying belief system of the Haitian peasants, and explores the secret societies, the historical, political, religious, economic, and social elements of Haiti — all of which are intimately connected.

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