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Sanne Derks
Power and Pilgrimage
Dealing with Class, Gender and Ethnic Inequality at a Bolivian Marian Shrine
Reihe: Nijmegen Studies in Development and Cultural Change (NICCOS)
Bd. 47, 2009, 232 S., 24.90 EUR, 24.90 CHF, br., ISBN 978-3-643-90014-2

"Power and Pilgrimage" is an in-depth anthropological study of life at a Bolivian pilgrimage site. It focuses on the experiences of pilgrims and how, in their Marian devotion, they express and learn to live with the various inequalities they experience in everyday life. Issues of poverty and class inequality lead them to approach the Virgin of Urkupiña to support them in their quest for economic betterment. Another social inequality that comes to the fore is based on gender: in particular Bolivian women seek Mary's support to deal with violence and oppression in their homes. Finally, ethnic inequalities are discussed by analysing the dance processions in honour of the Virgin, since these reflect contested ethnic identities.

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