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Title: The significance of the cultural context in the Christianization process : a comparative study of religious change among the Jukun in British Colonial Nigeria and the Irish in early Ireland
Author: Elawa, Nathan Irmiya
ISNI:       0000 0004 5921 8135
Awarding Body: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Current Institution: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis argues that Christianity exists only as it is embodied in particular cultures. Historically, however, those who brought the Christian message often gave little attention or understanding to indigenous cultures and points of view. The present work compares the Christianization process in two different cultural settings, focusing on the Jukun of central Nigeria and using the early Irish experience as a comparative framework. It elucidates the course of Jukun conversion by looking at the Jukun traditional cultural milieu and the missionaries’ assumptions and attitudes. It then contrasts this with the Irish Christianization experience, revealing a very different missionary attitude and an equally dissimilar indigenous experience. The focus on the Jukun is justified from an anthropological approach, presented, for instance, by Michael Adogbo and Friday Mbon. Following their paradigm of focusing on a specific cultural group, the study of the Jukun point of view is based on in-depth interviews with several elderly Wukari Jukun people. For the early missionary perspective, the thesis incorporates archival records, as well as communications with two retired missionaries who served in Wukari. The dissertation begins with an examination of the scholarly discourse on the inculturation of Christianity, particularly in Africa, and continues by describing the Jukun indigenous culture and worldview. Then it examines how Christianity impacted this society, with a focus on the kinship system. Next, early Irish society is examined, especially how their inculturation process compares and contrasts with the Jukun one. The thesis argues that the Jukun process was less successful than the Irish in terms of pre-Christian cultural practices being permitted to influence the final shape of Christianity; while Irish society shows a high degree of continuity between pre-Christian and Christian times, Jukun society demonstrates a radical discontinuity. It is hoped that the contrast between the two processes of inculturation demonstrated by the comparative nature of this thesis will contribute to the dialogue among religions and facilitate the kinds of respect and adaptability that are needed for peaceful coexistence in a globalized world.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BR Christianity