n Missionalia : Southern African Journal of Mission Studies - Before the missionaries : the Bible in North Africa




In standard treatments of the history of Christianity in Africa, the history of the Church in Africa, or the history and role of the Bible in Africa, the analytical attention given to North Africa is relatively minor, serving mainly as a prelude to the substantive story of Christianity, the church, or the Bible in missionary-colonial sub-Saharan Africa. And when North Africa does receive substantial attention in its own right, the focus has been on recovering the presence of Africans and Africa in the Bible. The focus of this article is the construction, reception, and interpretation of the Bible in North Africa. In other words, this article assumes that North Africa is African, including Mediterranean North Africa and Coptic, Nubian, and Ethiopian Africa. Furthermore, this article argues that North Africa does more than provide people and places that appear in the Bible. North Africa actually plays a role in the very construction of the Bible, and then goes on to engage with it in distinctive and substantive ways.


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