Religion and the Covid-19 Pandemic in Southern Africa  book cover
1st Edition

Religion and the Covid-19 Pandemic in Southern Africa

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after February 18, 2022
ISBN 9781032147833
February 18, 2022 Forthcoming by Routledge
280 Pages

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Book Description

This book investigates the role of religion in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic in Southern Africa.

Building on a diverse range of methodologies and disciplinary approaches, the book reflects on how religion, politics and health have interfaced in Southern African contexts, when faced with the sudden public health emergency caused by the pandemic. Religious actors have played a key role on the frontline throughout the pandemic, sometimes posing roadblocks to public health messaging, but more often deploying their resources to help provide effective and timely responses. Drawing on case studies from African Indigenous Knowledge Systems, Islam, Rastafari and various forms of Christianity, this book provides important reflections on the role of religion in crisis response.

This book will be of interest to researchers across the fields of African Studies, Health, Politics, and Religious Studies.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction: Religion and Public Health in the Shadow of COVID-19 Pandemic in Southern Africa

Fortune Sibanda, Tenson Muyambo and Ezra Chitando

Chapter 2: Exploring the Ethics of Ubuntu in the Era of COVID-19

Beatrice Okyere-Manu & Stephen Nkansah Morgan

Chapter 3: Social Distancing in the Context of COVID-19 in Zimbabwe: Perspectives from Ndau Religious Indigenous Knowledge Systems

Tenson Muyambo

Chapter 4: Coping with the Coronavirus (COVID 19): Resources from Ndau Indigenous Religion

Macloud Sipeyiye

Chapter 5: Living with COVID-19 in Zimbabwe: A Religious and Scientific Healing Response

Bernard Pindukai Humbe

Chapter 6: Religion, Law and COVID-19 in South Africa

Helena Van Coller & Idowu A Akinloye

Chapter 7: Tele-evangelism, Tele-health and Cyberbullying in the wake of the outbreak of COVID-19 in Zimbabwe

Lucia Ponde-Mutsvedu & Sophia Chirongoma

Chapter 8: The Role of Religion in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic Challenges in Tanzania

Paskas Wagana

Chapter 9: COVID-19 Containment Measures and ‘Prophecies’ in Kenya

Julius Gathogo

Chapter 10: Christian Religious Understandings and Responses to COVID-19 in Eswatini Sonene Nyawo

Chapter 11: Standing together in Faith through the time of COVID-19: The Responses of Church Umbrella Bodies in Zambia

Nelly Mwale & Joseph Chita

Chapter 12: Churches and COVID-19 in Botswana

Tshenolo J. Madigele & James N. Amanze

Chapter 13: The Coronavirus Pandemic and Persons with Disabilities: Towards a Liberating Reading of the Bible for Churches in Southern Africa

Makomborero Allen Bowa

Chapter 14: The Influence of Health Perceptions on Zimbabwe Muslim Responses to COVID-19 Restrictions over Ramadan, Pilgrimages and Funeral Rites in 2020

Edmore Dube

Chapter 15: Repositioning the Agency of Rastafari in the Context of COVID-19 Crisis in Zimbabwe and Malawi

Fortune Sibanda

Chapter 16: ‘When a Pandemic Wears the Face of a Woman’: Intersections of Religion and Gender during the COVID-19 pandemic in Zimbabwe

Molly Manyonganise

Chapter 17: Religion and COVID-19 in Southern Africa: Implications for the Discourse on Religion and Development

Ezra Chitando


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Fortune Sibanda (D.Phil) is a Professor of Religious Studies in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Great Zimbabwe University, Masvingo.

Tenson Mabhuya Muyambo (D.Phil) lectures in the Department of Teacher Development at Great Zimbabwe University in Masvingo, Zimbabwe.

Ezra Chitando (D.Phil) serves as a Professor in History and Phenomenology of Religion at the University of Zimbabwe, and Theology Consultant on HIV and AIDS in Africa for the World Council of Churches.