Relational Life through an African Lens: A Theological Exploration of Ubuntu in a Western Contemporary Church Context

Ducille, Deborah J. (2015) Relational Life through an African Lens: A Theological Exploration of Ubuntu in a Western Contemporary Church Context. Masters thesis, University of Gloucestershire.

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This research explores the origins and usage of the term ubuntu in sub-Saharan Africa and the applied ubuntu theology developed by Desmond Tutu in order to consider what, if anything, a theologically applied concept of ubuntu might offer to a Western contemporary church context as it seeks to grow in its relational life. Chapter 1 is an introduction to the research, offering the primary thesis statement, definitions, scope and an outline of chapter content. Chapter 2 provides some background to ubuntu through an exploration of its historical, contextual and linguistic development, its system of values and practice, and its subsequent understanding of personhood. This acts as a base from which the ubuntu theology of Desmond Tutu is overviewed in the context of post-apartheid South Africa. Chapter 3 outlines the ontology, methodology and methods chosen to explore the interface between the paradigmatic frameworks that govern the social sciences and theology. This includes a reflection on the nature of epistemology in the discipline of practical theology in which this research is located, and upon the characteristics of group interviews as the selected method of gathering qualitative data about ubuntu and the experience of relational life, both in urban Britain and in sub-Saharan Africa. Chapter 4 takes a thematic analytical approach to the qualitative data generated from two group interviews and extrapolates four correlative themes to bring into discussion with previous my exploration of ubuntu, in order to illuminate any transferrable aspects that might offer transformative resonance in relational life as experienced in a Western contemporary church context such as urban Britain.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Additional Information: Award conferred by the University of Gloucestershire in partnership with The Queen’s Foundation for Ecumenical Theological Education.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ubuntu theology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BX Christian Denominations
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Creatives
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 07 Aug 2018 11:20
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2023 08:55

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