Sunday, December 5, 2010
YHN/SSNUK anthology, Suffereth Not a Witch to Live, is out!
Suffereth Not a Witch to Live
Discourse on Child-Witch Hunting in Nigeria
Adeyemi Johnson Ademowo
Temidayo David Oladipo
Belief in witches is never peculiar to Nigerians, nor is it an ‘African thing’, for there are stories of witchcraft practices and witch-hunting in countries all over the world. Thousands of lives have been lost at stakes, village squares, witch pits, etc., all in the name of witch-hunting globally. However, the contemporary practice of witch-hunting in different parts of Africa, when similar beliefs have been thrown into the rubrics of history in other parts of the world, and, or, in the face of ‘modernity’ and contemporary advancements in science and technology, is quite disturbing. Again, considering that children, the bundles of joy in almost all cultures of the world, are now the targets of witchcraft accusations in some African countries such as Congo, Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, among others, one can’t but be moved to ask: is it a case of barbarism? Or is it a resurgence of primitively acts? Or, considering the role of churches, is it a case of ignorance of proper interpretation of religious texts? Does poverty has any role to play in these accusations?
Contributors to Suffereth Not a Witch to Live have one or two answers to proffer to the above questions. Although the book is essentially on the Nigerian case-study, some contributors attempted to go wider to explain the phenomenon in an African context. Indeed, the book can be taken as an amalgam of theoretical and applied contributions on the understanding of the menace called childwitch hunting by academics and social workers researching and working with the victims of the menace. Also included, for personal reflections of the readers to possibly deduce answers to the questions, are excerpts of interviews had with ten victims of childwitch hunting abuse (those who lived to tell the stories).
You can get a copy by contacting:
Yemi Johnson firstname.lastname@example.org
Gary Foxcroft www.steppingstonesnigeria.org