Indigenous Symbols and Practices in the Catholic Church presents views, concepts and perspectives on the relationships among Indigenous Peoples and the Catholic Church, as well as stories, images and art as metaphors for survival in a contemporary world. Few studies present such interdisciplinary interpretations from contributors in multiple disciplines regarding appropriation, spiritual and religious tradition, educational issues in the teaching of art and art history, the effects of government sanctions on traditional practice, or the artistic interpretation of symbols from Indigenous perspectives. Through photographs and visual materials, interviews and data analysis, personal narratives and stories, these chapters explore the experiences of Indigenous Peoples whose lives have been impacted by multiple forces - Christian missionaries, governmental policies, immigration and colonization, education, assimilation and acculturation. Contributors investigate current contexts and complex areas of conflict regarding missionization, appropriation and colonizing practices through asking questions such as, 'What does the use of images mean for resistance, transformation and cultural destruction?' And, 'What new interpretations and perspectives are necessary for Indigenous traditions to survive and flourish in the future?'
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About the Author
Dr. Kathleen J. Martin holds an M.A. in Native Religious Traditions and a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership with an emphasis in culture, language and literacy from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is an assistant professor in the Ethnic Studies Department at California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo and teaches courses in Indigenous Studies that address the realities and stereotypes of Indigenous Peoples in popular culture; philosophy and identity as expressed through narrative, art and media production; and Indigenous perspectives of land, environment and the importance of place; as well as the historical contexts of race, culture and politics. Her research interests are interdisciplinary, and she is author/co-author of articles such as: "Why don't they leave?" Saving faith and other issues of Catholic missionization; Teaching and learning advocacy for educational equity in a teacher education program; and A middle school strives to achieve team leadership through opposition and uncertainty. She is also co-founder of 'Community of Scholars: Gatherings of American Indian and Indigenous Students and Mentors', an organization designed for the mentorship of American Indian and Indigenous students in secondary and post-secondary institutions.