McDougall, “Stealing foreign words”

McDougall, Debra.  2012.  Stealing foreign words, recovering local treasures: Bible translation and vernacular literacy on Ranongga (Solomon Islands).  The Australian Journal of Anthropology 23(3): 318–339.

Abstract: In Oceania, which is arguably both the world’s most linguistically diverse region and its most Christian, Bible translation projects are sites where ordinary people pay attention to the kind of ‘interlingual articulations’ that are the focus of this special issue. This article focuses on an ongoing vernacular revival movement that arose from the translation of the New Testament into Luqa, an Austronesian language of Ranongga Island in the Solomon Islands’ Western Province. In 2000, the head translator began running workshops that encouraged native speakers to appreciate the lexical diversity and learn the grammatical structures of their language. In the context of the Bible translation and these language workshops, the vernacular is understood to be, simultaneously, an adequately transparent vehicle for God’s Word and something of value in and of itself. In elevating the status of the vernacular, participants also hope to elevate the status of local territories and communities marginalised in an increasingly English-speaking regional world.

McDougall, “Evangelical Public Culture”

McDougall, Debra. 2012. Evangelical Public Culture: Making Stranger-Citizens in Solomon Islands. In Christian Politics in Oceania, eds. Matt Tomlinson and Debra McDougall. London: Berghahn Books.

Tomlinson and McDougall, “Christian Politics in Oceania”

Tomlinson, Matt and Debra McDougall. 2012. Christian Politics in Oceania. In Christian Politics in Oceania, eds. Matt Tomlinson and Debra McDougall. London: Berghahn Books.

Tomlinson and McDougall – New Edited Volume

Tomlinson, Matt and Debra McDougall, eds. 2012. Christian Politics in Oceania. London: Berghahn Books.

Publisher’s Description: The phrase “Christian politics” evokes two meanings: political relations between denominations in one direction, and the contributions of Christian churches to debates about the governing of society. The contributors to this volume address Christian politics in both senses and argue that Christianity is always and inevitably political in the Pacific Islands. Drawing on ethnographic and historical research in Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and Fiji, the authors argue that Christianity and politics have redefined each other in much of Oceania in ways that make the two categories inseparable at any level of analysis. The individual chapters vividly illuminate the ways in which Christian politics operate across a wide scale, from interpersonal relations to national and global interconnections.

Contributors: Matt Tomlinson, Debra McDougall, Courtney Handman, Michael W. Scott, Annelin Erikson, John Barker, Geoffrey White, Joel Robbins, Webb Keane