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“#7 I Will Follow On:” Tracing Cultural Continuity through the Oneida Hymn Singing Tradition

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Carmi, Marissa

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Abstract

This thesis analyzes the long-standing tradition of Christian hymn singing by the Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin as a form of “everyday resistance.” A term used by James C. Scott in Weapons of the Weak to describe small-scale, informal, and covert acts initiated by lower classes in opposition to an established authority, “everyday resistance” is applied, here, for the preservation of Oneida values and culture that Christian hymn singing enabled. Although this effect might appear paradoxical, the overall goal of this thesis is to dismantle the binary that distinguishes Native Americans from Christianity and to suggest that the Christianity practiced by Oneida people, in particular, can be understood as a promise and commitment to the Oneida community and its well-being. This thesis positions itself, then, within the larger project to depict the Native American identity as a dynamic one through its emphasis on Native adaptability as a strategy of Native resistance.

Description

This thesis has been embargoed for 5 years. It will not be available until May 2022 at the earliest.

Keywords

Oneida, Hymn singing, Native American, Christianity

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