Religious Pluralism: African Christian Movements in Portugal

Religious Pluralism: African Christian Movements in Portugal

This project studies the characteristics and expressions of African Christian Movements in the diaspora through ethnographic and anthropological research in the Portuguese context (with a strong input of Angolan migrants). Focusing on the Evangelical and prophetic branches of these movements,the research will incorporate the issues of African migration in Europe, religious and Christian pluralisation, religious conversion and apprenticeship, religious diasporas, ethnicity, etc.

Estatuto: 
Proponent entity
Financed: 
No
Keywords: 

African Christianity; Christian Pluralism; Portugal; Migration

This project studies the characteristics and expressions of African Christian Movements in the diaspora through ethnographic and anthropological research in the Portuguese context (with a strong input of Angolan migrants). Focusing on the Evangelical and prophetic branches of these movements,the research will incorporate the issues of African migration in Europe, religious and Christian pluralisation, religious conversion and apprenticeship, religious diasporas, ethnicity, etc.

Objectivos: 
This project will connect with research being developed in Europe concerning African (and transnational) migrations, religion in Africa and in the diaspora, the history and contemporary status of Christianity in Europe, etc. Such research is, I believe, being fruitfully developed in Dutch institutions such as Leiden University (CNWS, FSBS), the African Studies Centre in Leiden, the University of Amsterdam (ASSR, Research Centre of Religion and Society), Vrije University, etc., thus the proposal for a joint institutional grounding for the project . Scholars in these and other Dutch institutions have developed leading anthropological production in both African studies and the anthropology of religion (namely, in the topics of Christianity, globalization, religious transmission, conversion, politics, etc.). This project will also feed into both European (NORFACE project on "‘Recognizing Christianity': How African immigrants redefine the European religious heritage"; EASA Anthropology of Religion Network) and Euro-African networks (protocols with Universidade Agostinho Neto, etc.)
State of the art: 
<p>A relevant body of knowledge has been developed in the recent years concerning non Christian religious movements in Portugal, such as: Brazilian and European based Pentecostalism, Muslim movements, Hinduism, etc [ See e. g. Bastos and Bastos (2000), Llera Blanes (2003, 2004); Mafra (2002), Mapril (2005), Tiesler (2000), Vila&ccedil;a (1999)] . One cannot say the same thing concerning African religious (and Christian) movements. This contrasts with the recent surge, within Portuguese anthropology, of the study of religion in African (postcolonial lusophone) contexts [See e. g., Carvalho (2000, 2001), Macagno (2004), Mafra (2000, 2002), Pereira (2005), Pina Cabral (2003), Saraiva (1999), Seibert (2003, 2004), Silva, S. (2004), Silva, T. (2004) , Valverde (2000), Vasconcelos (2004), West (2003)]. A similar statement can be proposed in European terms: despite recent and relevant efforts, there is not a rooted academic tradition concerning African Christianity in Europe, which contrasts highly with the Africanist tradition that has accompanied the history of anthropology and that has recently produced stunning work on both catholic and protestant movements in the continent [See e. g. Comaroff (1985), Comaroff and Comaroff (1991), Fernandez (1978, 1982), Geschiere (1997), Gifford (1998), Horton and Peel (1976), James (1999), Jules-Rosette (1976, 1979), Meyer (1999), Peel (1968, 1995), Pels (1999), Van Bimsbergen (1981), Van Dijk (2000)]. </p>In this context, looking at contemporary anthropological production, one finds that relevant, although scarce, work has been developed over the last years concerning African christianity in Central Northern Europe, namely in Germany (Adogame 2002, 2003, 204; Krause 2004), the Netherlands (ter Haar 1998, 1998b; van Dijk 2002, 2003, 2004) and Great Britain (Gerloff 1999; Hunt &amp; Lightly 2001). Yet, as one can easily conclude, other European regions remain virtually unstudied; such is the case, for example, of Portugal and Spain.
Parceria: 
Unintegrated
Coordenador 
Start Date: 
01/04/2007
End Date: 
01/03/2010
Duração: 
35 meses
Closed