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Horizontes Antropológicos

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SILVA, Kelly Cristiane da. The bible as constitution or the constitution as bible? Nation-state building projects in east timor.Translated byLetícia Maria Costa da Nóbrega Cesarino. Horiz.antropol. [online]. 2008, vol.4Selected edition, pp. 0-0. ISSN 0104-7183.

The article focuses on the conflicts in East Timor in 2005 between the Catholic Church and the Executive over the role of religious teaching in the elementary school curriculum. The analysis indicates that debates around this issue manifest different nation-state building projects for that country, as well as disputes among different groups regarding their roles in the independence process. We propose that these events be understood as a product of the itinerary of certain sectors of Timorese society during the Indonesian occupation of the territory. The singular position of the counter-diasporas is singled out, namely, those former members of the diplomatic front whom the Catholic Church (self-proclaimed representative of the "insiders") now opposes. The protests also pointed to an incipient debate on the building of a national memory, the Catholic Church claiming for a rightful acknowledgement by the State of its own role against Indonesian occupation.

Keywords : Catholic Church; East Timor; recognition; State-Nation.

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