“Cut Out to do Work”: Recruitment Experiences of a Folk Healer



There exists a variety of types of folk healers in African American society. This paper examines the sequence of dreams and visions whereby a woman realized the status of evangelical healer. "It was hypothesized that these altered states functioned as facilitating mechanisms whereby the subject could alleviate anxiety while at the same time realize a new master status. By gathering extensive interview data and employing a structuralist analysis, it was possible to relate the dreams and visions to personal crises, thus substantiating the hypothesis. In addition to offering processual insight to Anthony Wallaces "mazeway reconstruction,” this analysis provides a fresh perspective from which to examine the recruitment process to the status of "healer.”