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mojo mumbo-jumbo Login/Join
 
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I've seen this word 'mojo' around, in songs, as the name of a rock group, as a nickname. What exactly does it mean and where does it come from? Anyone know?
 
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<Asa Lovejoy>
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Magic, witchcraft, sorcery, I believe. Of African origin, I think, but I could be wrong.
 
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Not stopping to look it up, but wasn't there a song in which the oft-repeated line was, Got my mojo workin' / But it just won't work on you"?
 
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From AHD:

mo' jo

Noun: 1. A magic charm or spell. 2. An amulet, often a small flannel bag containing one or more magic items, worn by adherents of hoodoo or voodoo. 3. Personal magnetism; charm.

ETYMOLOGY: Perhaps ultimately from Fula moco'o, medicine man.
 
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As per Hic's question:

AHD also lists Muddy Waters (1915-1983) ...His many blues classics include ...and “Got My Mojo Working.”

And for those interested:

"Got My Mojo Working" song lyrics
 
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quote:
From AHD: mojo: 1. A magic charm or spell. 2. An amulet, often a small flannel bag containing one or more magic items, worn by adherents of hoodoo or voodoo.
But from the same source:
juju: An object used as a fetish, a charm, or an amulet in West Africa.

One smells a connection here, but it is more than I can uncover.
 
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Wasn't mumbo-jumbo in Little Black Sambo?
 
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Then of course, there's Mojo Jojo of The Powerpuff Girls! big grin
 
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quote:
Then of course, there's Mojo Jojo of The Powerpuff Girls! big grin


Arnie? You watch the Powerpuff Girls?!?!? eek
 
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You watch the Powerpuff Girls?!?!?

Of course. I lust after the mayor's secretary, Ms Sarah Bellum. cool
 
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Ahhh! arnie lusts! I knew it razz

While my topic is a bit more boring, I did look up Little Black Sambo, and the parents were Black Mumbo and Black Jumbo. However, I am fearful that I may become involved in a race riot if I continue because I know that book has been censored for kids. mad
 
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that's kind of bittersweet because little black sambo was a favorite of mine as a child. i have two editions and they are now worth a lot of money. it tickled my imagination to picture the tigers going round and round the tree, turning into butter for little black sambo's pancakes. his little purple shoes and little green coat and his umbrella. for some reason, every time it said tiger in the story, my sister had crossed it out and written skillibock.

but here in atlanta, it would be hurtful to ever bring it up. it's a very weird, fine line here. some black women collect the lawn jockeys, mammy statues etc. but i know most find it repulsive and of course there are still the ignorant white folk who flaunt such possessions. however, cleaning out my parent's estate, i found some in the attic and i plan to destroy them. @
 
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Wildflowerchild,
I, too, loved Little Black Sambo as a child. You are right that the fantasy of the tigers running around the tree, turning into butter, was so intriguing. As a child, I would sometimes run so fast and wonder if I would turn to butter. I still use the term from the book "crimson soles with crimson linings" to describe something grand.

To me, that kind of political correctness (ie, to ban a book) is not beneficial and does nothing to stem racism. Perhaps if I lived in the south, I would understand it more.
 
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1.) Wasn't the original "Little Black Sambo" Indian? As in from India, I mean? I've always suspected that much of the offense taken by thin-skinned readers of this children's classic was misplaced.

2.) Regarding the original question of this thread, a bit of trivia. "Mr. Mojo risin'," repeated several times, was a song lyric of a song made popular by The Doors. Rearrange the letters of that lyric and you get, of course, "Jim Morrison," the leader of that classic band.
 
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Hic said:
quote:
Not stopping to look it up, but wasn't there a song in which the oft-repeated line was, Got my mojo workin' / But it just won't work on you"?

and CJ said:
quote:
Regarding the original question of this thread, a bit of trivia. "Mr. Mojo risin'," repeated several times, was a song lyric of a song made popular by The Doors. Rearrange the letters of that lyric and you get, of course, "Jim Morrison," the leader of that classic band.


So, In looking for information to clarify this, I came upon this site which tells about

  • Muddy Waters singing the first song about Mojo called "The Mojo Blues",

  • and about the Beatles mentioning Mojo in their song "Come Together"

  • and about the Doors "LA Woman" which mentions the words "Mr. Mojo Risin' ... risin' risin'."


So it sure looks like lots of folks have Mojo! cool
 
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Cool site Melody!

To quote the site:

quote:
mojo is still a popular word in other contexts:

  • It's often a euphemism for various drugs (perhaps a reference to their magic power).
  • There's a high school football team in Odessa, TX known as mojo.
  • There's a radio station in New York playing "Mojo Radio."
  • Shakey's Pizza Parlor serves "mojo potatoes," a very good concoction of thick potato slices breaded and fried with chicken seasonings.
  • Servicemen who spent time in the Phillipines remember a Mojo as a potent bar drink there. (I saw the recipe on a t-shirt once, it sounded dreadful.)
  • There's an advertising agency known as Mojo in San Francisco.
  • David Ahadi reports of MOJO inline skates out of Kansas City -- Skates you can use your own shoes in.
  • There's an english music magazine named Mojo.



Some really cool Mojo references out there! I guess I gotta get my Mojo workin! wink
 
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CJ,

There are no tigers in Africa. big grin

This site gives lots of details about the author, Helen Bannerman, who was living in India at the time the book was written. It includes this:
quote:
The story relates the jungle adventures of the title character. In a fantasy setting that mixes elements of Africa and India, the hero, wearing bright clothes, encounters four tigers. As each tiger threatens to devour him, Sambo ingeniously offers each one a piece of his clothing instead.


Also:
quote:
Critics have also observed that Bannerman presents one of the first black heroes in children's literature. Little Black Sambo was initially regarded as a book that positively portrayed black characters, especially in comparison to the more negative books of the time that depicted blacks as simple and uncivilized. As racial consciousness grew in America and Great Britain in the mid-twentieth century, however, Little Black Sambo became an object of harsh criticism and heated debate.
 
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i feel like i'm back in my childhood, and imaginary people (you guys) are sitting at the end of the bed talking about my favorite story with me. i'm going to save these posts and read them later. big grin

now, on to adult tasks. i won't save the below, much as i mean it:

the story is adorable. i think everyone knows that. i don't think black people hate the story. the fault lies within the selves of certain white people whom i know all too well. they have actually incorporated outtakes of little black sambo and a zillion other obscure blackface pantomimes into their everyday "funnin'". no doubt they heard it on grandma's knee. the southerners here who for some reason still, STILL fancy themselves plantation masters. in their own minds. they know it's a fantasy, they don't seem to know it's a SICK fantasy. they have always had the luxury of wallowing in their own moldy, rotting racist anti-intellect.

it's so widely accepted STILL that they have a comfort cushion of all the people around them, family and friends. all of them who have never been anywhere. i say that, even though they have been anywhere, but their minds never leave. they have never for one second, taken a walk in anybody else's shoes and they never will. ‡
 
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i'm so tender-hearted it's ridiculous. i'm sitting here crying because i followed your link to the lbs site. i just love the drawings and i love the ones i have that i see, but the others, too that i have never seen. thank you soooooo much!H big grin
 
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you just don't know how excited i am! i found the wonderland page, too! i am crazy for the tenniel drawings. i have stamps and stickers and everything.

happy happy.
 
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Would you believe, I have never read this book? Would you also believe, I had never heard of it up until about two months ago? roll eyes

[crawling out of my cave and to the nearest library childrens section]
 
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you have to go to the link above of arnie's. this site, he underlined. http://www.pancakeparlour.com and see all the beautiful pictures. i feel like it's christmas morning.
 
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wfc,

I'm glad you were so pleased with that link! cool

I didn't venture beyond the Little Black Sambo page earlier. I'm really glad you did because it certainly is a fun site! Who'd have thought a pancake restaurant in Australia would have pages about Little Black Sambo, Alice in Wonderland and Harold Lloyd? razz
 
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Thank you for the link arnie, and wild for bringing it to my attention. It certainly does elucidate some for me. And yes, it is a fun site! big grin
 
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I agree with all of you--what a treat! Thanks a ton, Arnie! big grin
 
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Thanks a ton, Arnie!


The people to thank are the ones who work for Google! They did the hard work. wink
 
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i bet he googles like a minx. google me stupid, darling! big grin
 
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He's a bloomin' Googlin' Wonder! big grin
 
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Originally posted by wildflowerchild:
i bet he googles like a minx. google me stupid, darling! big grin

and

He's a bloomin' Googlin' Wonder!
<Blush> red face
 
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<Blush> red face


We loves ya arnie! You got your mojo workin! Got any strawberries? wink
 
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