- Tapa dura: 252 páginas
- Editor: Pickwick Publications (19 de enero de 2015)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 1498227341
- ISBN-13: 978-1498227346
- Valoración media de los clientes: Sé el primero en opinar sobre este producto
Christian Warfare in Rhodesia-Zimbabwe (Inglés) Tapa dura – 19 ene 2015
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Christian Warfare in Rhodesia-Zimbabwe examines the history of the Salvation Army in Rhodesia-Zimbabwe and its relationships with the state and with the rest of the church. In particular, it examines parallels between events of the first Chimurenga, a rising against European occupation in 1896-97, and the second Chimurenga in the 1970s, the civil war that led to majority rule. At the time of the first, the Salvation Army was barely established in the country; by the second, it was part of the establishment. The book explores the enmeshment of this Christian mission in the institutions of white rule and the painful process of disentanglement necessary by the late twentieth century. Stories of martyrdom and colonial mythology are set in the carefully researched context of ecumenical relations and the Salvation Army's largely unknown and seldom accessible internal politics. ""This book deals with significant issues, offering challenge on the basis of considerable research and setting the scene for necessary discussion among those familiar with the issues and also the periods covered. A recommended read."" --Commissioner John Swinfen, retired International Secretary for Africa, Salvation Army's International Headquarters, London, UK ""In this carefully researched history, Norman Murdoch focuses on the Salvation Army's involvement in Zimbabwe's history, charting its erratic missionizing career there and revealing hitherto undisclosed attitudes and influences regarding its partisan support of British colonialism. This book deserves to be read not only by Salvationists but by all who are interested in the missionary impulse or the history of British colonization in Africa."" --R.G. Moyles, Professor Emeritus, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada ""This is a fascinating, well-researched history. Telling the truth about the past can still be a hard thing to do, but Norman Murdoch has made an excellent attempt to lay out the truth about the relationships between missionaries, the settler regime, and the Shona and Ndebele peoples. I recommend this candid and helpful book."" --Commissioner Stuart Mungate, retired Salvation Army leader, Zimbabwe, Africa ""Christian Warfare in Rhodesia-Zimbabwe tells a riveting and little-known story of Salvation Army operations in Africa. This is a no-holds-barred account of how William Booth's devotion to his London East End evangelical enterprise led him to be entangled in Cecil Rhodes's dubious scheme of colonization. . . . The book deserves a wide readership not just in Africa but in every country touched by Salvation Army operations."" --Norman Etherington, Professor of History Emeritus, University of Western Australia, Crawley, Australia ""It is high time someone produced a book that explains the Salvation Army in contemporary Africa. This case study on their history in Zimbabwe is a most refreshing piece of writing on a country where armies usually bring to mind questions of politics and social justice. This book fills a gap in knowledge about religion in modern Zimbabwe."" --Isabel Mukonyora, associate professor, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY Norman H. Murdoch is Emeritus Professor of History, University of Cincinnati, Ohio, where he taught from 1968 until 2005. He is the author of Origins of The Salvation Army (1994) and numerous other books and articles.
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This valuable study continues the methodological approach followed in Murdoch’s earlier works of viewing the history of The Salvation Army not in a ‘providentialist’ way (history as ‘His-story’) but rather by applying the discipline of history to the Army in the same way as one might for any other organisation, even if the results may be at times embarrassing for the Army. As John Coutts describes Murdoch he ‘has been a critical but never a cynical observer – an independent observer and a candid friend.’
The book examines the history of The Salvation Army’s involvement In Rhodesia-Zimbabwe with a particular focus on its relationships with the white-minority colonial government, the First and Second Chimurenga (revolutionary struggles 1896-97, 1966-79) and the World Council of Churches. In the first chapter the central claims of the book are laid out – that the Salvation Army aided and abetted the colonial process in Rhodesia-Zimbabwe, that its claim to political neutrality is unsustainable in light of its support for colonial rule and white minority governments, and that it allowed Cold War politics to influence its resistance to national movements for independence. There is a bitter irony in the observation that African independence leaders gained their ideas of freedom from their mission-run schooling and then often found their church leaders opposing their freedom partly out of fear of Communism (pp. 5-7).
The earlier period is covered in the following four chapters with an examination of the arrival of the Army in Mashonaland (1891-95), the First Chimurenga including the ‘martyrdom’ of Edward T. Cass (1986-97), negotiations between William Booth and Cecil Rhodes which led to the appropriation of traditional homelands for the farm colonies that were part of Booth’s In Darkest England scheme (1901-8), and correspondence about Rhodesia between William and Bramwell Booth (1908). Chapter 6, ‘The Salvation Army and the Rhodesian State, 1908-65,’ has a focus on Salvationist schooling, with the claim that the Army’s relationship with the white Rhodesian state and with other churches was ‘that of a weak mission dependent on a strong colonial state’s paternal largesse, and the generosity of business tycoons and philanthropic trusts’ (p. 109). Chapter 7 deals with the clash between colonial, conciliar, and communist forces in the 19650s and 60s. Many churches objected to the legitimacy of Ian Smith’s white minority rule in a country of 274,000 white and 6.1 million black Africans. Even though the Salvation Army’s membership was 98% black (probably higher than any other denomination) its leadership hesitated to stand against Smith. Murdoch attributes this attitude to three contributing factors – 1) The Army’s dependence on white government funding for its hospitals, schools, and corps 2) The politically conservative attitudes of the Army’s international leaders, ‘particularly Americans’ and 3) the fact that the Army’s Rhodesian leaders were all white (though only 2% of Army membership was white).
Chapters 8-10 (and 13) deal with the troubled relationships between the Salvation Army, the Rhodesia Council of Churches, and the World Council of Churches (WCC) over support for independence movements which led ultimately to the withdrawal of the Army from both organisations. At the centre of the dispute was the WCC’s ‘Program to Combat Racism’ which involved financial grants to independence movements seen by most member churches as an issue of justice in solidarity with the oppressed but by more conservative members of the churches as support for Communist-backed violent armed rebellion. In 1971 the Army broke with the Rhodesian Council of Churches and in 1978, after the murder of two Salvationist women missionaries at the Usher Institute (detailed in chapters 11 and 12), it suspended its membership in the World Council of Churches, withdrawing altogether in 1981. Chapter 13 discusses the negative reaction of African Salvationists to the Army’s withdrawal from the WCC. On 31 August, 1981, up to 200 marched through the streets of Harare under police protection to Army headquarters, led by the lay leader Corp Sergeant Major Jonah Blessing Matsvetu, to protest the action and to demand a return to the WCC. One result of this was that Commissioner David Moyo broke ranks to petition General Arnold Brown on the Army’s return to membership.
The 14th and final chapter sets out the conclusions of the research. The Salvation Army in Rhodesia-Zimbabwe tied itself closely with the white minority government and was slow to hand over leadership to its African constituency. During the movement for majority rule the Army’s Anglo-American leaders, ‘driven by Cold War anxiety’ placed their interest in defeating Communism ahead of the interests of African officers and soldiers. In spite of this, after Independence, African Salvationists were forgiving. ‘As they claimed during their protests against actions taken in London, they love the international Salvation Army. This affection was grounded in appreciation for the sacrifice of talented missionary teachers, doctors and corps officers who served in Zimbabwe over many years. Many expatriates spoke for the human rights and political independence of their African brothers and sisters’ (p. 187).
The documentary research of this work is exemplary and is enhanced by visits to Zimbabwe to interview surviving participants. The book is not without some problems, however. At times the author engages in rhetorical flourishes that make unsupported claims. For example on p. 45 we are told that ‘For Cecil Rhodes and William Booth…a British-Christian world [would make] no distinction between what it meant to be British and what it meant to be Christian.’ This may have been true for Rhodes but I doubt that it accurately represents Booth who would never have allowed that ‘Britishness’ could ever substitute for a sound conversion, and whose own ‘empire’ always took priority over the British one. Here and there are found long catenas of rhetorical questions that are somewhat leading, often go unanswered, and needed greater connection to the underlying claims from which they seemed to arise (eg pp. 171-72). Chapter 5, while an interesting description of letters between William and his son Bramwell, does little more than narrate the content of the letters making no attempt to contextualise or interpret the material (one quotation is three whole pages long, pp. 66-68). The photographs in the Australian edition are almost all of very poor quality and could perhaps have been left out. The American edition is marginally better.
These are minor flaws and they certainly do not argue against the value and overall quality of this fine piece of historical writing. Dr. Harold Hill, a Wellington, New Zealand based scholar and adjunct lecturer in history at Booth College, Sydney edited the work, and was responsible for preparing the existing materials and presenting a final manuscript to the publisher. Without his involvement the book would not have seen the light of day. The book functions as a kind of valedictory tribute to the author with a biographical sketch from Andrew Villalon on Murdoch as ‘Colleague, Historian, and Teacher,’ a tribute to him as ‘Historian of the Salvation Army,’ by John Coutts, and a final biographical sketch from his wife Grace. The Salvation Army has been well served in this important history by one if its most candid friends.