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Becoming RastaOrigins of Rastafari Identity in Jamaica$
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Charles Price

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814767467

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814767467.001.0001

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(p.132) 4 Encounters
Becoming Rasta

Charles Price

NYU Press

This chapter draws on the stories of the Rastafari themselves to reveal why and how they became Rastafari, and how they utilize the justice motifs. The justice motifs function, among other ways, as ideas which provide a foundation for articulating grievances and framing alternatives. Truth, for example, can speak directly to Rastafari concerns with miseducation or deracination, and how these are wrongs. As such, the justice motifs have aroused the indignation of several generations of Rastafari, contributing to the longevity of the movement's orientation and to its wide appeal. For them, injustice and the past continually intrude upon the present, and it is through their identity that they address these intrusions. Hence, their life stories are situated within the streams of social history that they navigate and that have been visited in previous chapters.

Keywords:   justice motifs, social history, deracination, miseducation, Rastafari concerns, Rastafari identity, injustice

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