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Translating the Fifohazana (Awakening): The Politics of Healing and the Colonial Mission Legacy in African Christian Missionization

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This essay focuses on the evangelism of charismatic American Lutheran churches in Minneapolis/St. Paul by Merina Malagasy Lutheran pastors affiliated with the Fifohazana movement of Madagascar. By analyzing healing services led by one Malagasy revivalist, I argue that we may better understand how American Lutherans and Malagasy Lutherans are renegotiating the meaning of global Lutheranism while ‘reenchanting’ the body as a central interface of religious engagement. My main concern is to investigate how parallel framings of the healing services constitute a subtle traffic in representational forms that rework images of the global church.

Affiliations: 1: Colby College, Department of Anthropology 4700 Mayflower Hill, Waterville, ME 04901, Email:


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