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December 2019 Destinations

The South Carolina Yoruba Village of Oyotunji

South Carolina Yoruba Village of Oyotunji

It includes a Yoruba temple that was moved from Harlem, New York and claims to come to be in addition to the United States. The populace of the village has fluctuated over the years, which range from 5 inhabitants to over 200. Persons moved from big cities to live as their ancestors got.

Ofuntola was created in 1925 found in Detroit seeing as Walter Eugene King, later traveling to Haiti as a part of a good dance troupe. There he learned all about Yoruba culture, became an orisha priest, and proven the first Yoruba Temple.

He saw a need for Americans to learn about the African gods and wanted them to truly have a place taken off the racist rhetoric. He also appeared on a 1988 bout of Oprah to discuss his utopia.

Oba Adejuyigbe Adefunmi the second is the current innovator, born at Oyotunji. He started to be King in 2005 when his daddy died. At age 29, he previously to decide the future of the village. He targeted his energy on the area’s agriculture, becoming self-sufficient within an area that could be categorized as a foodstuff desert.

Today there are a few structures including residences, each using its own ancestor shrine. Network members figure out how to speak Yoruba and have on traditional African clothing like the koufia, a mind covering, danshiki, a tunic, and sokoto, pants.

Some practice polygamy but village duties and childcare are shared among all. A number of the persons that visited through the years possess since relocated permanently.

There’s also a cafe and industry for the estimated two thousand annual visitors and a cemetery. Group associates lecture at schools, produce films and literature, and even oversee ceremonies incorporating weddings.

The admission cost is $20 us dollars and guided tours can be found as well as horseback riding excursions. The Yemonja Event is one of their annual events, supplying arts booths, performances, food, and ceremonies.

Oyotunji has ties to the Gullah communities of the SC Lowcountry, who originated from Africa simply because slaves and developed their own language and customs. Why come to this African village in the rural south? Why does it exist? For tourists or for the people?

Maybe both equally. In light of bright white supremacist attacks in locations as close as Charleston in 2015, somewhere like this feels as essential as ever for the African American community.