SOAS University of London

Centre of World Christianity

Ethiopian Religious Politics and the Rise of Pentecostalism

Jörg Haustein, SOAS, University of London

Date: 21 May 2014Time: 5:00 PM

Finishes: 21 May 2014Time: 6:30 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings

Type of Event: Lecture

This paper looks at the political and historical parameters for the significant rise of Pentecostal Christianity in the traditionally Christian-Orthodox Ethiopia. Beginning with the origins of the movement under Haile Selassie's reign and ending in the current political and religious configuration under a Pentecostal Prime Minister, the paper traces Pentecostal interaction with the Ethiopian state and its politics. I will argue that the ostensibly a-political narrative of "persecution" espoused by much of Pentecostalism proved to be a robust political paradigm for times of oppression, but even guides Ethiopian Pentecostal politics in its present state of religious freedom.