Decolonising Development? Re-claiming Biko and a Black Theology of Liberation within the context of Faith Based Organisations in South Africa

Nadine Bowers Du Toit


An upsurge in interest with regard to the role of religion in development has also seen an increase in the study of Faith Based Organisations (FBO’s). These organisations have been less well studied within the South African context, yet both in light of South African Christianity’s colonial and apartheid past – and the practical challenges that arise within a Global South development context such as northern donors, the cultural relevance of programmes and the tension between justice and charity within a South African context (where the face of poverty is still largely black) they should be the subject of academic inquiry. In light of the latter as well a growing trend within Development Studies with regard to  decolonial and post-colonial critiques of development, this paper seeks to argue for the relevance of a both Black Consciousness and a Black Theology of Liberation in challenging and re-positioning the identity, role and practical challenges faced by the FBO within the South African context.


Theology and Development, Community Development, Black Theology, Faith Based Organisations, Black Consciousness, Biko

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