The Interface of Politics and Religion in Zimbabwe: Rethinking Religious Leaders as Agents of Consecration and Repudiation

Main Article Content

Bekithemba Dube
Milton Molebatsi Nkoane

Abstract

This article seeks to problematise religious figures and politicians who use religious discourses, narratives and functions to justify oppressive hegemonic systems and structures. In doing so, we show how various religious figures have amalgamated or joined together with oppressive political figures to maintain the status quo, paving the way for what we term the ‘consecration’ and ‘enthronement’ of political figures. Furthermore, we show how religious figures who failed the ZANU PF’s political part of their ideology, were dislodged from enthronement due to their different understanding of democracy. To problematise oppressive religious discourses used in the politics of an oppressive status quo, we position our article within critical emancipatory research (CER) discourse, by paying attention to its tenets, such as social justice, elimination of false consciousness, and emancipation. The article references our observations and findings, deriving from document analysis, on how religious leaders have related to the ZANU PF over the years. The argument is that religion, in the context of politics, should be aimed at improving human conditions, promoting social justice and achieving emancipation, and challenging oppressive political structures. It should unmask violence and represent all religious followers fairly and equally, regardless of political affiliation.

Article Details

How to Cite
Dube, B., & Nkoane, M. (2018). The Interface of Politics and Religion in Zimbabwe: Rethinking Religious Leaders as Agents of Consecration and Repudiation. Alternation Journal, (23), 224-243. Retrieved from https://journals.ukzn.ac.za/index.php/soa/article/view/1247
Section
Articles
Author Biographies

Bekithemba Dube, University of the Free State



Bloemfontein
DubeB@ufs.ac.za

Milton Molebatsi Nkoane, University of Zululand


Educational Psychology

nkoanem@unizulu.ac.za