• Accademic Unit
    Facoltà di Missiologia
  • Course
    Certificate Program , Licenza in Storia della Chiesa

Scope: The course aims at presenting insights into the history of Catholic missions in order to better understand contemporary issues regarding
missions too. History of missions will address more specifically the colonial and the postcolonial periods. History can help us to see continuities
and evident discontinuities between the past and the present idea of mission, important to appreciate its trajectory. Examination of history/historiography
of missions prepares us for the challenges posed by new evangelization. Postcolonial thought along with theories in social sciences can enhance our reading and interpretations of history of missions. They help
to decode past and present presuppositions, ideologies and discourses of power, and their epistemological foundations. The course offers occasion
for postcolonial submissions, questions and interpretations relating to historiography and idea of missions.
Content: More precisely missionary approaches in Asia, Africa and Latin America since the sixteenth century. The concept, meaning and substance
of Christian ‘mission’ throughout its long history, and the reasons for sustaining or modifying it. An understanding of missionary historiography
and mentality: presuppositions, narratives, representations, stereotypes grand narratives sustained by hierarchy, patriarchy and empire. The influence
of missionary activity on mission contexts: religion, culture, worldview. We do not deny that Christianity and conversions influenced contexts
causing at times radical changes. Cultural compromises, collaboration between us and them, resistance, mimicry, hybridism in missions are also
undeniable realities. Traditional methods as well as pioneering initiatives in‘mission lands’, today presented as tolerant and contextualized, had then
been equally contested. Missionary legacies of the past and the present responsibility towards them will be addressed. The postcolonial thought
serves as point of entry in the rethinking of mission history today. The course will ask the when-where-what-how-why questions relating to mission
history, as well as those questions relevant to mission/evangelization in the twenty-first century.Method: Interactive. Productive discussions by the participants in
class based on readings, reflections and field experience will be encouraged and valued. Creative participation of the candidates at discussion time.
A written assignment and presentation in the class is expected.


  • Semestre: 2° Semestre
  • ECTS: 3


Vitor Delio Jacinto de MENDONÇA

Lesson schedule

Lessons schedule not available


    A History of Christianity in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, 1450-1990: a
    ANNO ACCADEMICO 2019-2020 65
    documentary sourcebook, Cambridge (UK), Eerdmans, 2007; T. BANCHOFF
    and J. CASANOVA, The Jesuits and Globalization, Historical Legacies and Contemporary Challenges, Washington DC, Georgetown University, 2016;
    I. G. ZUPANOV, Disputed Mission: Jesuit Experiments and Brahmanical Knowledge in Seventeenth-Century India, Oxford and New York, OUP,
    1999; J. BAUR, 2000 years of Christianity in Africa: an African history 62- 1992, Nairobi, Paulines Publications Africa, 1994; P.M. D’ELIA, “Sunto
    Storico dell’Attività della Chiesa Cattolica in Cina dalle origini ai giorni nostri (635-1294-1948)”, in Studia Missionalia, Vol. VI, Ann. 1950-51, Rome, PUG, 1951, pp. 3-68.


Date Hours Room Exam From Letter To Letter Note
Jun 3, 2020 . . Homework A Z La data è indicativa, per la consegna dell'elaborato rispettare le scadenze e modalità previste.


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