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Rediscovering Old Gaul: Within or Beyond the Nation-State?

Independent Scholar, 94300 Vincennes, France
Religions 2019, 10(5), 331; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10050331
Received: 19 March 2019 / Revised: 22 April 2019 / Accepted: 8 May 2019 / Published: 16 May 2019
Paganism is an umbrella term which, along with Wicca and various eclectic Pagan paths, encompasses European native faiths or, in other words, autochthonous pre-Christian religions. Thus at the intersection of Paganism and indigenous religions the contemporary return of European native faiths arguably constitutes an example of European indigenism on the model of autochthonous peoples’ liberation movements. This paper furthers my previous analysis which addressed the theme of European native faiths and ethnopsychiatry (Ferlat 2014), where I began to explore the idea that European native faiths might offer a route for healing traumas resulting from waves of acculturation which, throughout history, have undermined specific groups in Europe nowadays labelled “ethnocultural”. Such traumas are the object of study in ethnopsychiatry and cross-cultural psychology among people who face the consequences of violent acculturation. Considering the role played by the revitalization of cultures on other continents, I continue here my reflection about the way that European indigeneity and indigenism might be incarnated by European native faiths. I focus in particular on a reconstructionist Druidic group in France, the Druidic Assembly of the Oak and the Boar (ADCS). I introduce the concept of “internal colonialism” as an analytical tool to understand the meaning of one of its rituals which relates to Old Gaul and epitomizes a decolonizing stance. I conclude that the ADCS embodies a specific native project: an internal decolonization and peaceful indigenization process at work within a nation-state. However given a context where internal colonization is not officially recognized, the potential resilience of such a process remains uncertain. View Full-Text
Keywords: Paganism; European Native Faith; indigenous religion; France; Gaul; Druidism; internal colonialism; postcolonialism; decolonization; ethnopsychiatry Paganism; European Native Faith; indigenous religion; France; Gaul; Druidism; internal colonialism; postcolonialism; decolonization; ethnopsychiatry
MDPI and ACS Style

Ferlat, A. Rediscovering Old Gaul: Within or Beyond the Nation-State? Religions 2019, 10, 331.

AMA Style

Ferlat A. Rediscovering Old Gaul: Within or Beyond the Nation-State? Religions. 2019; 10(5):331.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ferlat, Anne. 2019. "Rediscovering Old Gaul: Within or Beyond the Nation-State?" Religions 10, no. 5: 331.

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