Encounters in Quest of Christian Womanhood

The Basel Mission in Pre- and Early Colonial Ghana


Christianity has come to be a religion embraced especially by women and not least in Africa. This book provides one of the as yet rare case studies for the early stages of this development: how African women on the pre- and early colonial Gold Coast (Ghana) encountered Basel Mission Christianity, 1843-1885. Popular interpretations have tended to describe Christianity as either ‘empowering’ or ‘domesticating’ African women. Looking at variegated push-and-pull factors and in its focus on the agency of Ghanaian women this detailed analysis moves beyond. It situates the quest for Christian womanhood as part of trans-national discourses and exchanges, as well as local interactions, and writes a social history that is at once transnational and transcultural.

E-Book: List price

EUR €162.00USD $202.00

Biographical Note

Ulrike Sill, Dr.phil.des. (2007) in History, University of Basel, is research assistant for African History at the University of Basel. She has published on women and the history of the Basel Mission and Ghana.

Review Quotes

This work goes some way towards complicating our understanding of a key field of Christian encounter in nineteenth-century Africa. - John Parker, SOAS London, in: Journal of Ecclesiastical History, Volume 64, Issue 3 (2013).


All those interested in the history of Christian missions, in social and religious history in Africa, as well as in the history of empire, of gender and in transnational history.

Index Card

Collection Information