Book Reviews / Pneuma 30 (2008) 315-370 337 Tabona Shoko, Karanga Indigenous Religion in Zimbabwe (Aldershot, UK, and Burlington, Vt.: Ashgate, 2007). xiv + 144 pp. Appendices. Index. $99.95 hardcover. Tabona Shoko is the Chair of the Department of Religious Studies, University of Zimbabwe. This is a phenomenological case study of the ethnography and religion of his own people, the Karanga communities located near Mberengwa district of Zimbabwe’s Shona ethnic group. The limit of the scope constrains any large conclusion. Shoko examines the pragmatic nature of an indigenous religion in which health and healing are central. How do the Karanga explain the causes of, diagnose, and treat illnesses and social ruptures? Th e concept of health includes how the ancestors, spiritual forces, and, as in other African cosmologies, the host of spirits that abound in the universe protect, empower, and revitalize the physical, social, and spiritual well-being of the community. Rooted in indigenous religion, the Karanaga notion of health includes totems besides ancestral spirits ( vadzimu ), because the capricious ancestral midzimu provide health and wealth as well as drought, plague, and misfortune. Appendix A and Table IV provide help- ful lists of the various explanations for diverse
Pneuma – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2008
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