Launch of Prophetic Identities: Indigenous Missionaries on British Colonial Frontiers, 1850-75 (UBC Press).
The presence of indigenous people among the ranks of British missionaries in the nineteenth century complicates narratives of all-powerful missionaries and hapless indigenous victims. What compelled these men to embrace Christianity? How did they reconcile being both Christian and indigenous in an age of empire?
Tolly Bradford finds answers to these questions in the lives of Henry Budd, a Cree missionary from western Canada, and Tiyo Soga, a Xhosa missionary from southern Africa. He portrays these men not as victims of colonialism but rather as individuals who drew on faith, family, and their ties to Britain to construct a new sense of indigeneity in a globalizing world.
Tolly Bradford is a Research Associate in the Department of History at the University of Manitoba and a history consultant to Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission on Residential Schools.
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