Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Juju comes from the French word joujou , meaning “plaything.” Juju belongs to the realm of magic. Magic operates on the premise of the existence of a spiritual force that can be tapped into by women or men who have received the knowledge and the training to do so. Magic, and ipso facto juju, is neither good nor bad, but may be resorted to for constructive purposes as well as for performing nefarious deeds. Juju stems from the spiritual belief system emanating from West African countries such as Nigeria, Benin, Togo, and Ghana, although its assumptions are shared by most African people. To be quite specific, Juju refers to the magical power deliberately infused into a particular object. Thus, juju indicates that a given thing has been endowed with magical properties. However, the jujued object also becomes known as juju. A monkey's head is probably the most common juju object ...