The Impact Of Nonconformist Christianity And Colonialism

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It sought not only to bring in a set of religion in opposition to indigenous forms of religious life, but also “it sought to bring labor, gender, and sexual relations into conformity with a particular European pattern”. It seems as if, their efforts to change the minds and hearts of natives were not limited to the act of persuasion. Nonconformist Christian missionaries often possessed a sense of moral self-righteousness that led them to act unjustly and make uninformed judgments on the indigenous norms and values of the Tswana people and the southern African region as well. An incredibly important point to note is that the image of missionary Christianity identified itself with colonialism. “Because colonialism was seen as unjust, oppressive and repressive, Christianity was as well perceived as an ally or collaborator in a system of unwarranted economic, cultural and political exploitation”. Christianity was involved with the abominable trade in Africans as slaves. The evangelists claimed to be spreading the message of God, but by engaging in the practice known as the African slave trade, their commitment to the word of God can be questioned on every level. Many chiefs were wary of the Europeans and saw them as potential rivals to their authority. Some took the opportunity to show resourcefulness and the evangelists were allowed entrance into the Tswana communities. “[T]he evangelists set about establishing what we might think of as mundane theatre of industry; a site

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