An anthropologist visits a JW community in Santa María Zapotitlán, Mexico

by OrphanCrow 17 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • OneEyedJoe
    I can't find the quote yet, but the WTS has said that the earthly resurrection will start with the first people who died working back in time so there will be people who speak their language and are from their time, family, etc.

    I remember this as well, but I believe it was heavily qualified with things like "likely" "evidently" "we might expect" type stuff.  I think it was primarily based on the "god not of disorder but of peace" scripture.  It was basically idle speculation.  

  • roberto avon
    roberto avon
    OrphanCrow, I am reading  the doctoral dissertation of Dr. Jena Barchas and you're absolutely right that she isn't a Jw.
  • OrphanCrow
    roberto: OrphanCrow, I am reading the doctoral dissertation of Dr. Jena Barchas

    I look forward to your feedback, Roberto.

    Jena's paper is lengthy and dense in parts, but, overall, it is an accessible read. I have read several parts a few times now and I am finding her research to be thorough and precise. Her body of research is timely and relevant to many areas of study including the Watch Tower Society. She has an amazing ability to take the reader easily through social spaces - from intimate personal encounters with the local JWs to the spaces of the world headquarters of a corporation and into political and linguistics analysis of a highly charged geo-political community.

    I have been watching the Society's recent interest in language revitalization for some time now and was more than pleased to find Dr. Barchus-Lichenstein's research into this very phenomena. Language revitalization is different than just language translation. The interest in the revitalization of indigenous language, in the larger community beyond the WTS, got its legs sometime back in the 90s. Global initiatives into indigenous language revitalization projects appeared in all levels of culture around that time - from Unesco right down to grass roots community organizations.

    The discussions that I have participated in concerning indigenous language revitalization, at local levels, were concerned with language as a way to revitalize culture. As a way to re-connect and heal wounds from the colonial practice of taking away the voice of indigenous people through the banning of their language. The WTS' rationale and motivation for revitalizing language has a far different mandate to it than what other cultural groups are using to propel language revitalization.

    I have been puzzled for some time as to why the WTS has recently jumped on board with language re-vitalization and why they are making attempts to recruit from the local indigenous groups within Canada, and I was very interested to encounter an anthropologist who identified this as a phenomena that is not exclusive to my country. It is interesting to see the similarities and differences that are occurring simultaneously between two very different cultures, and yet identical cultures in a sense, in that the cultures are bound by one over-riding one - the culture of the Watch Tower Society.

    Roberto, I am interested in any comments or feedback you (or anyone else) may have on Dr, Barchus-Lichenstin's research.

  • fiddler
    Revitalizing cultures through indigenous language is a noble thing but what Watchtower is doing is every bit as destructive as the colonial version. The paper by Jena is very good although a pretty deep read. She got it! If Watchtower is being funded in any way to carry out their deceptive agenda I hope it stops when revelations like this come out.
  • OrphanCrow
    fiddler: If Watchtower is being funded in any way to carry out their deceptive agenda I hope it stops when revelations like this come out.

    The Watchtower's extensive translation services and the spread of literature in various languages, is not financially profitable for them unless they receive outside funding for literacy, language revitalization, etc. I think that the WTS has had their hand in getting funding for many years now under the guise of literacy promotion. I have yet to find the evidence of government/agency literacy funding, but it would not surprise me.

    Revitalizing cultures through indigenous language is a noble thing but what Watchtower is doing is every bit as destructive as the colonial version.

    Dr. B-L identifies the WTS' motive for language revitalization as being purely utilitarian in nature - to gain converts (apparently). It was noted in her research that the indigenous Chontal language is actually being changed in structure by the JW translators, such that it often resembles the Spanish structure/syntax rather than follow the structure of Chontal. So, what is happening with the WTS' project is that the indigenous language is being changed - the language is undergoing a shift in structure as the result of it being used by the JW community.

    What I found critical in Dr. B-L's research is that she identifies the 'voice' of Chontal speakers, being expressed by the JW community, is the voice of the Watchtower Society. It is not so much language 'revitalization', in that sense, but rather, language appropriation.

  • gone for good
    gone for good

    Orphan Crow-

    Thanks so much for that. Smart woman that, and you also!

    I would surmise that if WT operates in Mexico as a cultural entity that this would be their best opportunity to get a double-edged return on investment. Cultural education that is inseparable from WT authority, and a new souce of converts who come preprogrammed by the linguistic afinity.

    Canadian Aboriginals are likely targeted in the same fashion. Unbelievably, the Revenue Canada Agency grants tax free status to the cult, partly on its claim to be an educational entity, irrespective of its views of higher education. Canad being what it is, there is likely money flowing to WT to do cultural work there as well.

    Canadian aboriginals hopefully will equate Bethel et al on a par with residential schools and not get sucked in again by white guys with a bunch of ''bible based '' baloney.

  • Half banana
    Half banana

    How slimy of the Watchtower to corrupt even the languages of vulnerable ethnic peoples. They do it because they imagine they are God’s chosen ones and therefore can disregard trifles like linguistic heritage.

    They act like ISIS does and would subsume all culture and its history to their deluded will.

    JW org is a menace to the rest of humanity.

  • rebel8

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