religion, colonization and decolonization in congo, 1885-1960. religion, colonisation et décolonisation au congo, 1885-1960

A comprehensive history of the interaction between religion and colonization

Religion in today’s Democratic Republic of Congo has many faces: from the overflowing seminaries, the Marian shrines of the Catholic Church, the Islamic brotherhoods and the Jewish community of Lubumbashi, to the ‘African’ churches of the Congolese diaspora in Brussels and Paris, the healers of Kimbanguism, the televangelism of the booming Pentecostalist churches in the great cities, the Orthodox communities of Kasai and the ‘invisible’ Mai Mai warriors in the brousse of Kivu. During the colonial period religion was no less central to people’s lives than it is today. More surprisingly, behind the seemingly smooth facade of missions linked closely to imperial power, also then faith and worship were marked by diversity and dynamism, tying the Congo into broader African and global movements.

The contributions in this book provide insight into the multifaceted history of the interaction between religion and colonization. The authors focus on the institutional (including legal) political framework, examine the complex interaction between indigenous and ‘imported’ non-African religious beliefs and practices, and zoom in on the part religions played in the independence movement, as well as on their reaction to independence itself.

Contributors: Piet Clement (Bank of International Settlements), Bram Cleys (Vrije Universiteit Brussel), Anne Cornet (Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren) Marie Dunkerley (Exeter University), Zana Aziza Etambala (Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren), Anne-Sophie Gijs (Université Catholique de Louvain), Miguel Bandeira Jerónimo (University of Coimbra), Emery Kalema Masua (University of the Witwatersrand), Sindani E. Kiangu (Université de Kinshasa), Elisabeth Mudimbe-Boyi (Stanford University) Dominic Pistor (Simon Fraser University), Jean-Luc Vellut (Université Catholique de Louvain), Vincent Viaene