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Evangelical Africanist

A visit with Robert Baum, Associate Professor, Department of Religious Studies

By LuAnne Roth
Published: - Topics: religion religious studies indigenous religion fieldwork Africa

Diola Prophets

Topics: religion Africa

Baum’s current research examines the history of an indigenous African religion, especially the Diola prophets who claim direct revelation from Emitai, the supreme being. In the late-nineteenth century, prior to the French occupation, there were eleven prophets, all of them men. Since French colonization, Baum discovered, there have been 42 prophets, most of them women. Baum is examining the intensification of this prophetic tradition as it transformed from an exclusively male phenomenon to a predominantly female one.