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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:From Camp to Encompassment: Discourses of Transsubjectivity in the Ghanaian Pentecostal Diaspora
Author:Dijk, Rijk A. vanISNI
Periodical:Journal of Religion in Africa
Geographic terms:Netherlands
Subjects:Baptist Church
Religion and Witchcraft
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1581683
Abstract:This article explores the role of religion in identity formation in situations where individuals are engaged in intercontinental diasporic movement, starting from R.P. Werbner's notion that religion and strangerhood transform together. In particular, the author examines the diaspora of Ghanaians in the Netherlands and the role Ghanaian Pentecostalism appears to play in the forming of their identity as strangers in Dutch society. The author uses the term 'transsubjectivity' to indicate those processes by which religion deals with strangerhood as shaped by the power of the modern African and Western nation-State. He distinguishes two discourses in present-day Ghanaian Pentecostalism. The first, which he calls 'sending' discourse, involves so-called prayer camps in Ghana, to which (prospective) migrants may turn for spiritual help and protection in their transnational travel. The second, or 'receiving', discourse relates to the figure of the Pentecostal leader in the diaspora who represents the 'abusua panyin', the family head. These two discourses 'inject' the migrant differently into transnational interconnectedness, and they deal differently with the body personal and the ways in which techniques of the self are employed in constructing the subjectivity of the Ghanaian as migrant and stranger. Bibliogr., notes.