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Tongues of FireLanguage and Evangelization in Colonial Mexico$
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Nancy Farriss

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190884109

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190884109.001.0001

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The Word of God

The Word of God

(p.167) Chapter 7 The Word of God
Tongues of Fire

Nancy Farriss

Oxford University Press

Sermons and elaborated catechisms provided a comprehensive survey of the precepts and practices that the new Christians were obliged to follow. Discourse analysis of sixteenth-century doctrinal literature, primarily Dominican, in Spanish as well as bilingual texts, reveals a generally negative message that was addressed to the Indians. Relatively little attention was paid to the offer of salvation; instead the texts were intent on condemning the Indians’ traditional religion as “idolatry” and on warning the Indians against the triple threat of man’s inclination to sin, the snares set for him by the devil, and the likelihood of eternal damnation in hell, to which their ancestors had already been consigned.

Keywords:   eschatology, doctrine, discourse analysis, idolatry, Zapotec, Oaxaca, sin, the Devil, hell

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