"The Virtual Israelite and the Colonial Construction of Indigenous Religion"
In the nineteenth-century United States, members of the growing evangelical movement saw themselves as a “new Israel,” an imagined community united by political and religious aims. Some evangelicals extended this idea to Indigenous peoples, whom they believed to be descendants of Ancient Israelites. This talk shows how evangelicals and others in early America imagined Indigenous people to practice “Israelite religion,” and explores how their constructions of Indigenous peoples’ supposed religion made political claims that, at times, ran counter to those of the United States.
Matthew W. Dougherty is an Assistant Professor, Teaching stream at Emmanuel College of Victoria University, where they teach the history of Christianity and support online pedagogy. Their research in the history of religion and empire in North America explores how religious emotions have solidified political and territorial claims. Their first book, Lost Tribes Found: Israelite Indians and Religious Nationalism in Early America came out this summer from the University of Oklahoma Press.
This lecture will be delivered on Zoom. To attend, please click THIS LINK at 4pm on Monday, January 17th, 2022.