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American Indian Liberation: A Theology of Sovereignty [Paperback]

By George E. Tinker (Author)
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Item description for American Indian Liberation: A Theology of Sovereignty by George E. Tinker...

How Eurocentric understandings of Jesus and God clash with American Indian worldviews-and how Christian Indians define themselves and their faith today. A leading Christian Indian theologian describes the oppression suffered by American Indians since the arrival of European colonists, whose worldview and attempts to convert the native population brought both literal and spiritual decimation. Not surprisingly, the methodology, language, and understandings of Christian beliefs of the colonists-and the majority society since the colonial period-largely failed to "Christianize" the native population, and indeed make Christianity incomprehensible to them. "'What can the death of a man 2000 years ago possibly have to do with people who live today?' Covered in black grease, my brother looked up from the engine of an old truck long enough to ask a serious theological question. He had been raised a Christian Indian, but had begun incorporating traditional spiritual practices, including the Sun Dance, back into his life for several years. . . . 'Why do you dance?' was the question I asked in return. . . His only reply as he dove back into the engine compartment was, 'Oh!... Yeah.'"

Publishers Description
Why Christian understandings of Jesus and God clash with American Indian worldviews. "Tink" Tinker of the Osage Nation describes the oppression suffered by American Indians since the arrival of European colonists, who brought a different worldview across the ocean and attempted to convert the native population to the religion they also imported. The methodology, language, and understandings of Christian beliefs of the colonists????????????????????????and the majority society since the colonial period????????????????????????have largely failed to Christianize the native population. Different conceptual frameworks and different understandings of terms made (and make) Christian doctrine particularly unappealing and at times incomprehensible to Indians.

Citations And Professional Reviews
American Indian Liberation: A Theology of Sovereignty by George E. Tinker has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Reference and Research Bk News - 02/01/2009 page 65

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Orbis Books
Pages   170
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.18" Width: 6.04" Height: 0.39"
Weight:   0.56 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 30, 2008
Publisher   Orbis Books
Edition  New  
ISBN  1570758050  
ISBN13  9781570758058  

Availability  0 units.

More About George E. Tinker

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! George E. "Tink" Tinker, a member of the Osage Nation, is a professor of American Indian Cultures and Religious Traditions at Iliff School of Theology in Denver. An ordained Lutheran pastor, he is the author of several books and co-author of A Native American Theology (Orbis, 2001).

George E. Tinker currently resides in Denver.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > History > Americas > Native American > General & Post-Columbus
2Books > Subjects > History > Americas > Native American
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Evangelism > General
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Evangelism

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Roman Catholic

Reviews - What do customers think about American Indian Liberation: A Theology of Sovereignty?

George Tinker and the American Indian Worldview  Dec 5, 2009
George Tinker has once again thoroughly researched and written on the topic of European colonialism as pertaining to the American Indian. For anyone who is a novice to this topic they will find the material very informative. For those who are well versed in the issue of colonialism as pertains to the American Indian it is another review. I was especially impressed with Tinker's review of South American Liberation Marxist Theology (taken up by the Jesuits)as a deficient methodology for solving the 500 year problem of Indigenous poverty and loss of land due to its basis in violent reaction and revolution. Liberation theology in South America as taken up by the Roman Catholic Church when turning violent has only masked the underlying problem of a privileged class still impoverishing the underclass. I don't know if I agree that Christianity has lost its voice entirely in regard to offering a solution to the problem but certainly institutional models of Christianity that promote more of the same can be criticized. However, the idea that individual American Christians with a radicalized Christology can make a difference in partnerships with Native peoples is indicated as a solution by Tinker if the theology is first radicalized by Natives in their context first. Sovereignty as a core issue in determining a Native Christology seems to be the moral imperative for Tinker who is not willing to acquiese to Euro-American theological models as the starting point for dialogue. There might be a rub there in dialogue so there is wonderment about how a dialogue would ensue with this attitude. However, the suspension of judgement on both Native and Euro-American attitudes needs further treatment as successful dialogue in these matters can only be achieved with the suspension of judgement on both sides. The book needs a better treatment on what theologian Philip Yancey calls "dual nature of suffering" wherein the collective suffering of a people is bound up with their oppressors and therefore, the collective healing is also bound up at some point but Tinker does not give this axiom sufficient treatment. The entire thesis of Native people's determining their own Christology apart from Euro-American constructs and imput may have limitations as Euro-Christian models and methodology have already been ingrained, adopted and practiced for centuries in Native North American populations and to reject any Euro-American methodology as already practiced by Christianized Native Americans could exclude them from the dialogue and make them feel unwelcome. A better treatment of exactly where all the differing Native tribes in North America are at would have been helpful as there seems to be a generalized review that does not indicate for instance where certain tribes are at on this subject and the decisions they have made to incorporate certain Christian traditions in blending them with their own Native practices. This practice appears to be called assimilation by Tinker and yet that could be offensive to certain Native people who have on their own terms successfully blended their Native belief and practice with Christianity. To indicate that Native people who have adopted certain Christian beliefs are oppressed by colonialism could be construed as offensive for those who have determined their own Christology by such a practice of blending on their own Native terms.

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