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Martin Lindhardt

Abstract

In much of the literature on African Pentecostalism, conversion has been associated with a striving for modernist individualist identities and a strategy for legitimising social, generational rupture. This article contributes to the existing scholarly field by shedding light on the ways in which urban Tanzanian born-again Christians address generational antagonisms and position themselves in relation to elder generations. Drawing on anthropological discussions of the concept of agency and focusing particular attention on the ways in which a specific kind of agency is cultivated through participation in ritual, I argue against a narrow association of born-again Christianity with modernist individualism. While an assertion of individual autonomy is implied in conversion, Tanzanian born-again Christians do not cease to be social beings, deeply embedded in family relationships. I demonstrate how born-again religious practice enables urban Tanzanians to actively rephrase and sometimes even improve their relationships with unconverted family elders.

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Power in Powerlessness

A Study of Pentecostal Life Worlds in Urban Chile

Martin Lindhardt

Exploring the ritual and everyday religious practices through which Pentecostal life worlds unfold this book breaks new ground in the study of Latin American and global Pentecostalism. In addition to asking the familiar question of why many lower class Latin Americans convert to Pentecostalism, the author asks another question, so far largely neglected in the scholarly literature: how, or through what processes, do people begin and continue to relate to themselves and the social world in a particular Pentecostal way? For members of the Evangelical Pentecostal Church in Valparaíso, Chile, life is pervaded by divine and satanic presence and intervention. Through its fine grained analysis of different ritual, discursive/narrative and reflective processes the book shows how church members integrate sacred others into their everyday lives ― or how they learn to live, think and behave as Pentecostals.
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Martin Lindhardt

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Martin Lindhardt

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Martin Lindhardt