Orginal Publication Date
Explorations in Sights and Sounds
Dread is an exploration of the thought world of the Rastafarian Brethren of Jamaica as synthesized by the author. Father Owens, a white American-born Jesuit priest, did several years of intensive visiting with and listening to Rasta thinkers in the slums of western Kingston, Jamaica; most contact was from 1970 to 1972. He originally met the Rastas while he was doing teaching and social work in the area, and he seems to have been accepted by many of them as a sympathetic listener. Through Owens, Rasta thought comes across as a form of revitalization movement based on a unique interpretation of the Christian scriptures. These scriptures are taken by the Brethren as the source of all important knowledge and are the beginning point for many of their arguments. (However, the Rastas assume that not all of the true scriptures are available, since some were suppressed by the white men, and all are subject to mistranslation from their original language, which the Rastas say is Amharic).
Copyright, ©EES, The National Association for Ethnic Studies, 1984