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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Folk Christology: The Dialectics of the Nganga Paradigm
Author:Schoffeleers, MatthewISNI
Year:1989
Periodical:Journal of Religion in Africa
Volume:19
Issue:2
Period:June
Pages:157-183
Language:English
Geographic terms:Subsaharan Africa
Africa
Subjects:healers
Christianity
Religion and Witchcraft
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/1580847.pdf
Abstract:This paper argues that in large parts of black Africa the medicine person or 'nganga' provides a framework within which to conceptualize the person of Christ and the role of the Christian minister (and of the Islamic mullah). Christ and the Christian minister in their turn provide a framework within which the nganga is constantly being reconceptualized. It is the nganga's task to specify which moral trespasses have caused his client's suffering and what the latter has to do to free himself of that suffering. Like the biblical Christ, the nganga may thereby address immediate and/or ultimate causes, as illustrated by the dual icon of the slaying nganga and the slain nganga. The dialectic of the nganga paradigm is shaped partly by its alternation between these two poles, and partly by the mutual transformative process operating between the nganga complex and Christian (or Muslim) ministries. Bibliogr., notes, ref.
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