Missionaries & colonial violence

A portrait of Serra

A portrait of Serra at age 61 (1774)


The recent controversy over the canonisation of Junipero Serra raises some interesting questions, not only about the role of clerics and missionaries in the early stages of colonialism, but also about how history is used and re-represented in the media during these kinds of debates. The role of missionaries in empires is examined in detail in Emily Manktelow’s third-year course, ‘Empires of Religion’.



You can read more about the issue here:

The Guardian: ‘Junípero Serra’s brutal story in spotlight as pope prepares for canonisation’

CNN: ‘Hero or horror? Junipero Serra, priest behind Calif. missions, becomes a saint’

The Economist: ‘Sinner and saint’