Religion

The Dangerous African Marriage of Religion to Tradition

Using Yoruba traditions as a reference, Foluke Adebisi explores the centuries’-long intertwining of religion and tradition in many African societies.

Increasingly, we see culture, religion and tradition being used as justification for legislative actions, administrative actions and executive policies. The effect of this is a blurring of the lines between the personal and the political spheres in African society. I suggest […]

February 6th, 2019|Featured, Society|0 Comments|
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    The romantic rewriting of Haile Selassie’s legacy must stop

The romantic rewriting of Haile Selassie’s legacy must stop

Yohannes Woldemariam trawls through the history books to expose the truths of Haile Selassie’s 44-year reign over Ethiopia.

Emperor Haile Selassie, who ruled Ethiopia from 1930 to 1974, died in 1975, but he lives on through the romantic lyrics of the late Jamaican reggae star Bob Marley and Ethiopian pop star, Tewedros Kassahun, better known as Teddy Afro.

Yet there is […]

Reading List: Most popular book reviews of 2018

We couldn’t say goodbye to 2018 before sharing our top book reviews of the year, as voted by your clicks! Here they are:

Afrotopia by Felwine Sarr – Anna Wood calls “Afrotopia” an inspiring manifesto and metaphor for a new Africa.
The Oromo and the Christian Kingdom of Ethiopia 1300-1700 by Mohammed Hassen – Aleksander Engeskaug says this book is an important […]

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    Book Review: Creed and Grievance: Muslim-Christian Relations and Conflict Resolution in Northern Nigeria

Book Review: Creed and Grievance: Muslim-Christian Relations and Conflict Resolution in Northern Nigeria

 LSE’s Portia Roelofs calls this book an important new resource for those concerned with public action to build peace in northern Nigeria

There are a lot of books about Boko Haram out at the moment. Creed and Grievance: Muslim-Christian Relations and Conflict Resolution in northern Nigeria, edited by Abdul Raufu Mustapha and David Ehrhardt, is probably the most important new […]

Beyond belief: how powerful is religion in Africa?

Much academic and popular literature portrays Africans as more innately religious than other people. Ben Jones challenges this assumption. Citing his experience in Uganda and the work of other academics, he stresses the importance of looking beyond personal religiosity to the social institutions and wider cultural norms often present across the continent. In this way, religion in Africa is not reduced […]

October 8th, 2018|Featured, Society|0 Comments|

Weber’s puzzle: Why is Nigeria so religious, yet so poor?

If the German philosopher Max Weber is right about the causal link between religiosity and prosperity, the why, asks LSE’s Olu Fasan, is Nigeria so poor.

A few months ago, the popular American preacher TD Jakes came to the church I attend in London. Preaching on leadership and wealth, he said prayer is not leadership and not enough to make […]

August 23rd, 2018|Featured, Society|0 Comments|
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Photo Credit: Ebenezer Obadare. Gallery

    On the Theologico-Theatrical: Explaining the Convergence of Pentecostalism and Popular Culture in Nigeria

On the Theologico-Theatrical: Explaining the Convergence of Pentecostalism and Popular Culture in Nigeria

As the supply of  ‘assurances of salvation’ in the Nigerian religious market exceeds supply, Pentecostal pastors are turning to popular culture to help expand their congregations, writes Ebenezer Obadare.

 

Dilemmas

Over time, Nigerian Pentecostalism has taken on many of the externalities of popular culture in Nigeria, creating a unique composite of spirituality and secular entertainment. This enfolding of Pentecostalism and popular […]

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    Mozambique’s insurgency: a new Boko Haram or youth demanding an end to marginalisation?

Mozambique’s insurgency: a new Boko Haram or youth demanding an end to marginalisation?

Joseph Hanlon argues that Mozambique’s new “Islamic” insurgency is about marginalised youth demanding to be heard, and therefore is similar to anti-establishment protest across the world.

 

Small groups have been raiding towns and villages in northeast coastal Mozambique in rapid hit-and-run attacks. Since October, more than 50 people have been killed – some decapitated with machetes. The army and riot […]

June 19th, 2018|Conflict, Featured|1 Comment|
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    From ‘saved’ to secularised: the challenges facing former LRA fighters after reintegration into their communities

From ‘saved’ to secularised: the challenges facing former LRA fighters after reintegration into their communities

While rehabilitating and reintegrating former LRA fighters, the international NGO World Vision emphasises Christian values of forgiveness. Despite this, few returnees remain ‘saved’ once they return to their communities. Dr Grace Akello investigates why this is the case, and what this means for reintegration programmes in the future.

This article is part of the #PublicAuthority blog series, part of […]

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    Using Google Trends to Measure Ethnic and Religious Identity in sub-Saharan Africa: Potentials and Limitations

Using Google Trends to Measure Ethnic and Religious Identity in sub-Saharan Africa: Potentials and Limitations

Google Trends has already been used by social science researchers to measure racism within a community. In this article LSE’s Elliott Green demonstrates how this online tool is useful in measuring other personal attributes that can be challenging to assess.

 

One of the more interesting online tools that has become available to social science researchers in recent years is Google Trends (GT), […]

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