I have been observing and analyzing religious trends in various parts of sub-Saharan Africa for several decades, with a particular focus on new religious movements, variously termed “minority religious groups,” “sects,” or “unconventional religious groups.” My years of living in southern Nigerian cities afforded me valuable insights into the workings of complex religious landscapes. As democratization, neoliberalism, media deregulation, and global religious activism increasingly change the stakes of coexistence between religious groups, and between such groups and the state, the management of Africa’s increasingly competitive religious public spheres has become a more compelling area of investigation.Read the rest of Traditional, African, religious, freedom?.
Rosalind I. J. Hackett
Rosalind I. J. Hackett is Professor and Head of Religious Studies, and adjunct in Anthropology, at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She has published widely on religion in Africa, notably on new religious movements, religious media, regulation of religious diversity, and religion and conflict. Recent publications include: Proselytization Revisited: Rights Talk, Free Markets, and Culture Wars (ed.) (Equinox 2008) and Displacing the State: Religion and Conflict in Neoliberal Africa (University of Notre Dame Press, co-edited with James H. Smith, 2012). In 2010 she was re-elected President of the International Association for the History of Religions (until 2015).