People and Land

People and Land : Decolonizing Theologies

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Empires rise and expand by taking lands and resources and by enslaving the bodies and minds of people. Even in this modern era, the territories, geographies, and peoples of a number of lands continue to be divided, occupied, harvested, and marketed. The legacy of slavery and the scapegoating of people persists in many lands, and religious institutions have been co-opted to own land, to gather people, to define proper behavior, to mete out salvation, and to be silent. The contributors to People and Land, writing from under the shadows of various empires--from and in between Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Caribbean, and Oceania--refuse to be silent. They give voice to multiple causes: to assess and transform the usual business of theology and hermeneutics; to expose and challenge the logics and delusions of coloniality; to tally and demand restitution of stolen, commodified and capitalized lands; to account for the capitalizing (touristy) and forced movements of people; and to scripturalize the undeniable ecological crises and our responsibilities to the whole life system (watershed). This book is a protest against the claims of political and religious empires over land, people, earth, minds, and the future.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 230 pages
  • 152.4 x 228.6mm
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 1978703627
  • 9781978703629

Table of contents


Collin Cowan


1.The land has colours

Jione Havea


2.Lost Paradises: Tracing the Imperial Contours of Modern Tourism Upon Lands and People

Steed Vernyl Davidson

3.When No Land on Earth is “Promised Land”: Empire and Forced Migrants

Gemma Tulud Cruz

4.Empty Land: Righteous Theology, Sneaky Coloniality

Santiago Slabodsky

5.Religious Diversity, Political Conflict, and the Spirituality of Liberation

Mitri Raheb

6.A Theology of Land and its Covenant Responsibility

Sifiso Mpofu


7.Landed Churches, Landless People

Kuzipa Nalwamba

8.Empire 2.0: Land Matters in Jamaica and the Caribbean

Garnett Roper

9.Delusions of Empire: On People and Land in Oceania

Nāsili Vaka‘uta

10.People, Land and Empire in Asia: Geopolitics, Theological Imaginations and Islands of Peace

Jude Lal Fernando

11.Colonization of the Watersheds and the Green Politics of Hagar

George Zachariah

12.Lost Land: Visualizing Deforestation and Eschatology in the Apocalypse of John and the Column of Trajan in Rome

Barbara Rossing
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Review quote

People and Land: Decolonizing Theologies is a collection of thoughtful and provocative essays. It incisively connects seemingly disparate dots - forced migration, modern tourism, war, exploitation, and climate crisis, to name a few - to challenge "colour-blind," Eurocentric theological and hermeneutical underpinnings of imperial and ecclesial structures that have perpetuated coloniality from antiquity to the present day. By raising up voices of thought leaders and community activists from the Global South, contributors to this volume present alternative interpretations of scriptures and traditions that reframe the crises of our time and elucidate pathways toward healing and emancipation of motherlands and their dismembered communities, non-human and human alike.--Lauress Wilkins Lawrence, Wisdom Commentary Series (Liturgical Press) Editorial Board
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About Gemma Tulud Cruz

Jione Havea is a native Methodist pastor from Tonga and research fellow with Trinity Theological College (Aotearoa) and the Public and Contextual Theology (PaCT) research centre of Charles Sturt University.
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