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Faith in African Lived Christianity

Bridging Anthropological and Theological Perspectives


Edited by Karen Lauterbach and Mika Vähäkangas

Faith in African Lived Christianity – Bridging Anthropological and Theological Perspectives offers a comprehensive, empirically rich and interdisciplinary approach to the study of faith in African Christianity. The book brings together anthropology and theology in the study of how faith and religious experiences shape the understanding of social life in Africa. The volume is a collection of chapters by prominent Africanist theologians, anthropologists and social scientists, who take people’s faith as their starting point and analyze it in a contextually sensitive way. It covers discussions of positionality in the study of African Christianity, interdisciplinary methods and approaches and a number of case studies on political, social and ecological aspects of African Christian spirituality.

Benno van den Toren and Klaas L. Bom


This article explores the importance of “action research” and “participatory research” (ar and pr) for intercultural theology. After introducing these research strategies, it provides a theological rationale for their use in intercultural theology: (1) they move beyond false dichotomies between theoretical and practical theology; (2) they understand professional theologians as part of communities of believers; and (3) they allow for intercultural encounters which approach “the other” as partners in research rather than merely objects of research. Using the example of a research project which studies attitudes to the interface between science and Christian faith among African university students and academics, the article considers three crucial issues for the value and use of ar and pr in intercultural theology: (1) the intrinsic motivation of the partners for intercultural research projects, (2) the role of shared visions of change and (3) the question of truth implied in visions of human flourishing.1

Christine Boshuijzen-van Burken and Darek M. Haftor

This study analyzes a complex case in society, namely, how to distinguish ride-sharing applications, such as Uber, from ordinary taxi enterprises. We conduct a structural analysis of normative practices with distinctions at the following levels: (1) aspects; (2) radical types, genotypes, and phenotypes; (3) part-whole, enkaptic relationships, and interlinkages; and (4) the distinction between qualifying and foundational functions as it is captured in the theory of normative practices. We conclude that the genotype of taxi matchmaking enterprises, of which Uber is an example, represents a novel normativity that could positively serve society and also produce normative challenges, depending on its governance. Therefore, regulators should not dismiss the entire genotype of taxi matchmaking enterprises, but should address the phenotypes that are illegal or that cannot thrive without the illegal behaviors of its users. This conclusion is clear from the structural and directional sides of the practice.

Peter Jansen, Jan van der Stoep and Henk Jochemsen

The network society is generally challenging for today’s communication practitioners because they are no longer the sole entities responsible for communication processes. This is a major change for many of them. In this paper, it will be contended that the normative practice model as developed within reformational philosophy is beneficial for clarifying the structure of communication practices. Based on this model, we argue that government communication should not be considered as primarily an activity that focuses on societal legitimation of policy; rather, it focuses on clarifying the meaning of the actions of the government. If the government can convincingly answer the question about the reason for their actions, societal legitimation will subsequently follow. Hence, it is argued that government communication is primarily linguistically qualified.

Religion, Migration and Identity

Methodological and theological explorations


Edited by Martha Frederiks and Dorottya Nagy

Migration has become a major concern. The increase in migration in the 20th and 21st centuries has social, political and economic implications, but also effectuates change in the religious landscape, in religious beliefs and practices and in the way people understand themselves, each other and the world around them. In Religion, Migration and Identity scholars from various disciplines explore issues related to identity and religion, that people - individually and communally -, encounter when affected by migration dynamics. The volume foregrounds methodology in its exploration of the juxtaposition of religion, migration and identity and addresses questions which originate in various geographical locations, demonstrates new modes of interconnectedness, and thus aims to contribute to the ongoing academic discussions on mission, theology and the Christian tradition in general, in a worldwide perspective.

Conceptualizing Temporary Economic Migration to Kuwait

An Analysis of Migrant Churches Based on Migrant Social Location


Stanley John


Edited by Martha Frederiks and Dorottya Nagy


Dorottya Nagy and Martha Frederiks

“Make Holy the Bare Life”

Theological Reflections on Migration Grounded in Collaborative Praxis with Youth Made Illegal by the United States


Steve Pavey and Marco Saavedra