The role of religion in social change : the arrival of Christianity among the Dii people in Adamawa, Northern Cameroon (1934-1960)
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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The main interest in this article is to analyse the social changes that occurred when the Norwegian missionaries introduced the Dii-people in Northern Cameroon to Christianity. It was an encounter where the Dii took an active part and employed to good purpose the alliance with the missionaries, by gaining increased political independence, by receiving western education and by strengthening their ethnic identity. Many questions about the transformation of the Dii society, about their spiritual reorientation and the development of ethnic identity, are yet to be answered. The Dii, however, were not merely passive ”victims” of aggressive Protestant missionaries; they took an active part in forming their future in a period of considerable social change. The ”religious breakthrough” initiated by the missionaries was used by the Dii to promote freedom of religion, and they were thus liberated to choose the road towards modernity that fitted them best, whether their focus was on the Christian or the Islamic religion or on the mainly secular western education.
Originally published in: Svensk missionstidskrift = Swedish missiological themes, vol. 93(2005) p. 479-503, see http://www.teol.uu.se/digitalAssets/6/6185_SMT4_05.pdf