Resurgent Voices in Latin America: Indigenous Peoples, Political Mobilization, and Religious Change

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"Resurgent Voices in Latin America explores the critical role of religious beliefs and practices played by indigenous organizations in their struggle to redeem their rights and place in the nations of Latin America in which they are encompassed. This important contribution to indigenous studies should be required reading for students concerned with new directions in Latin America."-June Nash, author of Mayan Visions: The Quest for Autonomy in an Age of Globalization.
"Resurgent Voices in Latin America offers a rich, multi-faceted, and innovative approach to the roles religion plays in the emergence and political mobilization of indigenous identities."-Manuel Vásquez, coauthor of Globalizing the Sacred: Religion across the Americas

"This important collection brings fresh data and challenging insights to the analysis of religion and political mobilization among indigenous peoples in Latin America."-Daniel H. Levine, University of Michigan

"This is a rich volume. The essays are clearly written . . . Steigenga's concluding chapter serves as a excellent summing-up essay." -The Journal of Latin American Anthropolgy

After more than 500 years of marginalization, Latin America's forty million Indians have recently made major strides in gaining political recognition and civil rights. In this book, social scientists explore the important role of religion in indigenous activism, showing the ways that religion has strengthened indigenous identity and contributed to the struggle for indigenous rights in the region.
Drawing on case studies from Bolivia, Peru, Guatemala, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Mexico, the contributors explore four key questions. How have traditional religions interacted with Christianity to produce new practices and beliefs? What resources, motivations, and ideological legitimacies do religious institutions provide for indigenous social movements? How effective are these movements in achieving their goals? Finally, as new religious groups continue to compete for adherents in the region, how will individuals' religious choices affect political outcomes?
Resurgent Voices in Latin America offers new insight into the dynamics of indigenous social movements and into the complex and changing world of Latin American religions. The essays show that religious beliefs, practices, and institutions have both affected and been affected by political activism.

Edward L. Cleary is a professor of political science and director of Latin American studies at Providence College. His most recent books include The Struggle for Human Rights in Latin America and Power, Politics, and Pentecostals in Latin America.

Timothy J. Steigenga is an associate professor of political science at the Wilkes Honors College of Florida Atlantic University and author of The Politics of the Spirit: The Political Implications of Pentecostalized Religion in Costa Rica and Guatemala.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813534602
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2003
  • Pages: 280
  • Lexile: 1680L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.24 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.86 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Resurgent voices : Indians, politics, and religion in Latin America 1
2 From civil society to collective action : the politics of religion in Ecuador 25
3 New voice in religion and politics in Bolivia and Peru 43
4 Breaking down religious barriers : indigenous people and Christian churches in Paraguay 65
5 Interwoven histories : the Catholic church and the Maya, 1940 to the present 93
6 "God was already here when Columbus arrived" : inculturation theology and the Mayan movement in Guatemala 125
7 "Knowing where we enter" : indigenous theology and the popular church in Oaxaca, Mexico 154
8 Mayan Catholics in Chiapas, Mexico : practicing faith on their own terms 187
9 The indigenous theology movement in Latin America : encounters of memory, resistance, and hope at the crossroads 210
10 Conclusion : listening to resurgent voices 231
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