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Convictions of the SoulReligion
and Agency in the Central America Solidarity Movement$
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Sharon Erickson Nepstad

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780195169232

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0195169239.001.0001

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Martyr Stories

Martyr Stories

(p.95) Chapter 5 Martyr Stories
Convictions of the Soul

Sharon Erickson Nepstad (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The story of the assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero in El Salvador in 1980 became a powerful recruitment tool for missionaries, and helped mobilize efforts to stop American support for the military regime responsible for his death. This chapter explores how the archbishop’s story helped build a solidarity movement. Martyr stories provided missionaries with an effective means to educate audiences about Central America’s socio-economic and political problems, enabled them to politicise familiar Christian themes to elicit solidarity and support for the movement, and provided emotional and moral resources that gave people the courage and motivation to embark on risky forms of activism.

Keywords:   missionaries, Central America, solidarity movement, recruitment, martyr stories, activism

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