History, Power, and Identity

History, Power, and Identity : Ethnogenesis in the Americas, 1492-1992

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For the past five centuries, indigenous and African American communities throughout the Americas have fought to maintain and recreate enduring identities under conditions of radical change and discontinuity. The essays in this ground-breaking volume document this cultural creativity - this ethnogenesis - within and against the broader contexts of domination; the authors simultaneously encompass the entanglements of local communities in the webs of national and global power relations as well as people's unique abilities to gain control over their history and identity. By defining ethnogenesis as the synthesis of people's cultural and political struggles to exist as well as their historical consciousness of these struggles, History, Power, and Identity breaks out of the implicit contrast between isolated local cultures and dynamic global history. From northeastern plains of North America to Amazonia, colonial and independent states in the Americas interacted with vast multilingual and multicultural networks, resulting in the historical emergence of new ethnic identities and the disappearance of many earlier ones. The importance of African, indigenous American, and European religions, myths, and symbols as historical cornerstones in the building of new ethnic identities emerges as one of the central themes of this convincing collection.
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Product details

  • Electronic book text | 280 pages
  • Iowa City, United States
  • English
  • 158729110X
  • 9781587291104

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"This volume is at the cutting edge of cultural-historical studies and contributes to the development of theory and methodology. The authors are aware of and take full advantage of the most recent work on their topics, while at the same time not ignoring previous work in the area. The chapters are theoretically sophisticated but data-based."--Kenneth M. Kensinger, Bennington College
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