Category: African Religions

The Grace of the Lord Jesus be With All

A pilgrimage to the Gambia and a visitation by his ancestors led this African American minister to a greater appreciation of other religious traditions. By Brad R. Braxton

An Equilibrist Vodou Goddess

The Vodou spirit Ezili Freda represents an image of femininity defined by Haiti’s complex history. By Eziaku Atuama Nwokocha

The Silent Voices of African Divination

The special rapport between diviner and spirit is frequently expressed as twinning; likewise, voiceless creatures are employed in divination because they illustrate the wisdom of quiet elders. By Philip M. Peek

Bonds, Boundaries, and Bondage of Faith

Nigerian faith traditions are stronger than ever, but divisiveness and violence have increased. The author reflects on Nigeria’s history and proposes steps to help religions assume a productive role in society. By Jacob K. Olupona

The Myth of Purity

The idea of purity in Yoruba-derived traditions needs to be challenged and complicated. By Ayodeji Ogunnaike

Habitations of the Sacred

Global Africana communities negotiate theories of health and healing, utilizing diverse strategies to achieve physical, spiritual, and ontological stability. By Tracey E. Hucks

Lost and Found in Translation

Whether planned or accidental, desired or dreaded, the passage from one place to another, one life stage to another, or one state or status to another, often figures centrally in the stories we tell about our lives. By Michael Jackson

Exotic Ordinary

Action and passion coexist in this portrait of one spirit medium in Madagascar, evoking complex philosophical questions. By Michael Lambek

Listening to the Small Voice

With rising numbers of orphans worldwide, it is time to develop a theology that places their concerns at the center. By Elizabeth J. A. Siwo-Okundi

From Periphery to Center

The growing influence of Pentecostalism in Africa is enhancing a debate about authenticity and legitimation, and is transforming secular states. By Simeon O. Ilesanmi

On Africa, a Need for Nuance

Culture and religion are not radically distinct categories in African traditional societies: a response to Simeon Ilesanmi. By Jacob Olupona