BBC Newss’s online’s Africa site has given in to crass sensationalism in its headline about the Pope’s visit to Benin. The religion we know as voodoo and always depicted negatively in Western film and literature, is a set of beliefs deeply held in West Africa and not the black magic mumbo jumbo of pooular fiction.
The online headline about the pope visiting the home of voodoo gives an impression of two opposites meeting. Indigenous African religions often combine aspects of Christianity or Islam and are as relevant to their adherents as Christianity or Islam are to theirs. But crass or insenstitive coverage just pepetuates damaging myths about Africa.
Contrast this with the more measures approached by the BBC’sDavid Willey in Rome.