Fellowship: Rocca Dissertation Research
Fellowship Year(s): 2022
Project/Theme Title: Prophetic religious movements and the ethics of healing in Ethiopia
Abstracts: Amidst the ongoing reconfiguration of religious boundaries in Ethiopia –marked by the decline of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church’s authority and the appearance of religious movements such as neo-pentecostal churches– the popularity of spiritual healing practices like exorcism and spirit possession has been revived by a variety of charismatic figures such as Pentecostal prophets, Orthodox priests and Muslim preachers. This prophetic religious “atmosphere” has accompanied a political climate of economic liberalization, infrastructural investments and efforts towards the reorganisation of the federal political model by the government in recent years, reforms which are now threatened by civil war, debt and soaring inflation. In which ways this interreligious space of healing –made of borrowings and overlaps but also relations of agonism and competition between religious traditions– relates to the disaggregation of institutional orders and the growing sentiment of failed promises?