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Communalism and Curses/Blessings: The Kamwe of Nigeria and the Imprecatory Psalms

Kwabe, Nyampa T (2015) Communalism and Curses/Blessings: The Kamwe of Nigeria and the Imprecatory Psalms. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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The search for an appropriate hermeneutic for relevant biblical interpretations in African contexts remains one of the major challenges facing African biblical scholars. Although considerable progress has been achieved since the second half of the last century, in the wake of such approaches as postcolonial criticism in particular, there is ample room for more theoretical contributions. This thesis formulates communalism as a hermeneutical framework to interpret the Imprecatory Psalms from a Kamwe perspective, thereby contributing towards the burgeoning African-centered biblical hermeneutics. The methodology that describes my use of communalism is influenced by the interpretive theories of other African biblical scholars – notably, Justin S. Ukpong and Gerald O. West, who both emphasize collaboration between trained African biblical interpreters and ordinary readers. Communalism as an interpretive theory and its usefulness for interpreting the Imprecatory Psalms in particular is my contribution to collaborative African biblical interpretation. This I have demonstrated through an analysis of qualitative data on the Kamwe concept of cursing and blessing, which leads to and justifies communalism as my hermeneutic. I have focused on the Kamwe because the particularity of each African ethnic group determines how symbols of communalism (such as ‘land’ and ‘mountains’) are harnessed and interpreted. Moreover, I aim to illustrate how a specific African socio-cultural context contributes towards the interpretation of the Imprecatory Psalms, which may otherwise be missed if a rather generalized pan-African approach were used. The methodology of communalism as a Kamwe hermeneutic is developed in response to Tuesday David Adamo’s African Cultural Hermeneutics, which is currently the dominant African-centred approach to the Imprecatory Psalms in biblical scholarship.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Communalism, Kamwe, Cursing/Blessing, Imprecatory Psalms, African Cultural Hermeneutics, Inculturation Hermeneutics, Collaborative Hermeneutics,
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures (Leeds) > School of Philosophy, Religion and the History of Science
Depositing User: Rev Nyampa T Kwabe
Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2015 11:30
Last Modified: 22 Jun 2015 11:30
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/9220

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