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Green religious activism in Africa 
Hans Olsson (University of Copenhagen)
Francis Benyah (Åbo Akademi University)
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Religion (x) Climate Change (y)
Neues Seminargebäude, Seminarraum 23
Wednesday 31 May, -
Time zone: Europe/Berlin

Short Abstract:

How are religious actors engaging the future of 'green' Africa considering impeding climate changes? Against debates about the ‘greening of religion’ we explore culture-nature tensions, disruptions and transgressions in the still understudied area of green religious activism in Africa.

Long Abstract:

How are religious actors engaging the future of green Africa? How are religious communities mobilizing and responding to impeding environmental concerns and climate change?

The rationale for this is threefold; 1) African contexts will be hit hardest when temperatures rise and weather patterns changes; 2) religious ideas, values and practices are influencing African culturally diverse and religiously plural settings; and 3) articulations of religious green activism in Africa remain largely overlooked in comparison to the northern hemisphere (Nita 2016, Baugh 2016).

The works on African religious environmentalism(s) that so far exist (e.g. Daneel 2001; van Klinken 2022), primarily remain situated in a Christian context with a leaning towards ‘progressive’ environmental engagements. We want to broaden the study of green religious activism to African Traditional Religions, African Islam(s) as well as African Christianities, and are encouraging contributions that engage ‘progressive’ and/or ‘conservative’ expressions, mobilization and articulations from the perspective of any of the above mentioned religions.

We are particularly interested in analyses that explore culture-nature tensions, disruptions and transgressions in relation to:

-religious green spaces, infrastructure and rituals

-spiritual ecologies/geographies

-religious education and articulations of ecological justice

-cultivation practices and soil conservation

-dark green religious expressions

-eco-fascism and ecologies on the far right

-ecology, evangelization and da’wa

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Wednesday 31 May, 2023, -