On the other hand, I am somewhat confused as to the author's intention. In the introduction, he seems to indicate that his objective is to argue the proposition that the slaves in the Deep South and their relatives in the Central African Kongo used their rituals as means with which to surmount their sufferings. The chapters in the dissertation, however, seem to be disconnected to that thesis. Attempting to show how rituals were effected by variables of the American South or the Christian faith and then, in turn, effecting the American South, the author focuses in turn on the influence of the missionaries, on the minski tradition, and on rituals of the dead, before finalizing with an analysis on the transmigration of movement in the slave community and on the folkloric record of flight. The impression that one may receive is that a variety of themes are involved here, and that it is difficult to separate them. Rituals of Resistance is variegated in more ways than one: it is a multidisciplinary research that is also multi-methodological, whilst simultaneously being multi-thematic. Brilliant in its collection of information, stylistic writing, and evident passion, the dissertation portrays a narrative of courage within unbelievable oppression. However, one wonders whether it is one theme or many and, if the former, which exactly it is.
Young, J.R. (2002). Rituals of Resistance: The Making of an African-Atlantic Religious Complex in Kongo and along the Sea Islands of the Slave South. Ph.D., Diss., University of California-Riverside.