As you all know, I spent the winter holidays doing some research in Africa, and was... delayed in returning by an unfortunate incident involving a witch doctor, a monkey, and a turkey baster. (The malpractice suit is still being deliberated, so all I can say at this time is that my hair is supposed to return to its normal color within the next few weeks...)
Anyway, today we are going to talk about minkisi - power figures that serve multiple purposes, from divining to curing illnesses.
Your assignment, should you choose to accept it (and I certainly hope that you do accept it, since there just might be some questions on your exams about it), is to find an nkisi while on our field trip this month, and bring it back to demonstrate it to the class.
I trust that you all got your permission waivers signed... (Those of you who did NOT get your waivers signed will have to do an essay, instead.)
Option 1: Find an nkisi and bring it back for us all to see. Tell us about its origin, its power, and what happened when you used it.
**Worth 25 points**
Option 2: Go to the library and read up on minkisi. You have special permission to go in the restricted area, so long as you are accompanied by a librarian with sufficient DADA and transfiguration skills. Write an essay no less than three paragraphs long, describing a particular nkisi and its potential uses in your own life.
**Worth 20 points**
This assignment is due on