revitalization movement

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revitalization movement,

political-religious movements promising deliverance from deprivation, the elimination of foreign domination, and a new interpretation of the human condition based on traditional cultural values, common in societies undergoing severe stress associated with colonial conquest and intense class or racial exploitation. A prominent example is the Ghost DanceGhost Dance,
central ritual of the messianic religion instituted in the late 19th cent. by a Paiute named Wovoka. The religion prophesied the peaceful end of the westward expansion of whites and a return of the land to the Native Americans.
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 of Native Americans, who believed that their ritual would cause ancestors and bison herds to return and white people to leave. Although a nonviolent form of protest, it ended with the massacre of over 200 Sioux men, women, and children by the U.S. army at Wounded KneeWounded Knee,
creek, rising in SW S.Dak. and flowing NW to the White River; site of the last major battle of the Indian wars. After the death of Sitting Bull, a band of Sioux, led by Big Foot, fled into the badlands, where they were captured by the 7th Cavalry on Dec.
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, S.Dak., in 1890. Cargo cults are another form of revitalization movement found in New Guinea and other parts of Melanesia, especially after the intense movements of armies through the area during World War II. Followers believe that local governments prevent their ancestors from delivering an abundance of European or American goods. Their rituals reflect their sense of economic marginalization, belief that the world capitalist economy behaves irrationally, and alienation from state-level politics. These movements are also referred to as nativistic, revivalistic, millenarian, or messianic.


See J. Mooney, The Ghost Dance Religion (1965); P. Worsley, The Trumpet Shall Sound (1968); A. H. Shovers, Visions of Peace (1985).

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Kroeger, MM, of the Loyola School of Theology, discusses some of these efforts in a case study written for an ecumenical Consultation on World Christian Revitalization Movements, under the auspices of the evangelical Asbury Theological Seminary in the United States.
be thought of as "Revitalization Movements." (188) He writes:
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