Ògún, the Yorùbá god of iron, is venerated throughout the Atlantic world. While many African-based religions coexist in Florida, the shrines discussed here were developed by individuals connected with Oyotunji Village in South Carolina. South Florida's urban shrines differ remarkably from north central Florida's rural shrines. I suggest several factors determine this variation: changing characteristics of Ògún, differing circumstances of the shrines' creators, the environment in which the owners work, and whether the setting is urban or rural. Urban shrines reflect religious competition where many manifestations of òrìṣà worship coexist but are not in agreement. In these shrines, Ògún is vengeful protector. The urban shrines tend to be visually strident, filled with jagged forms of protective weapons. In rural north central Florida, Ògún is clearer of the way, a builder, and reflects the personalities of those who venerate him. These shrines are less harsh and are filled with tools.
- © 2012 by The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved. Please direct all requests for permission to photocopy or reproduce article content through the University of California Press's Rights and Permissions website, at http://www.ucpressjournals.com/reprintinfo.asp.