EDITORIAL This issue has been dedicated to Portuguese-speaking Africa. There are plenty of reasons why that is a good idea. We may note first that, of our five articles, one relates to the Guinea Coast, three to Angola, one to Mozambique. Portuguese-speaking Africa is an extremely extended reality geographically, even though it has been excessively marginalised in modem history, religious history especially. What holds it together in terms of a usable unity is, of course, that in these areas Portuguese rule lasted long enough for the language to remain that of the elite and of education. Students of English-speaking and French-speaking Africa are too inclined in practice to ignore this very significant third area within the sub-Saharan continent. What, however, makes the history of Portuguese-speaking Africa so especially interesting is the length of the written record: five hundred years of documents. Anyone looking at the massive twenty volumes of the Monumenta Missionaria Africana, edited by Antonio Brasio (Lisbon, 1952-88), containing west-coast material, or the nine volumes hitherto published of the Documents on the Portuguese in Mozambique and Central Africa (Lisbon, 1962-89) arriving with the ninth at 1615 and including full English translations, must realise what a goldmine is
Journal of Religion in Africa – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1988
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