HISTORY, TEXT AND HERMENEUTICS: A BLACK THEOLOGY APPRAISAL OF JUDGES 12:1-6 TRANSLATIONS INTO AFRICAN LANGUAGES

L Bookholane

Abstract



The recent and recurring xenophobia/Afrophobia1 in the democratic South Africa contradicts
the notion of God�s preferential option for the poor and the Church�s critical
solidarity with the poor. The contradiction was exacerbated by the institutionalization of
the notion of the Church�s critical solidarity with the state.2 It is in particular a disgrace to
the liberating and humanizing legacy of Black Theology in South Africa. This essay reflects
on language particularly Bible translation in the incitement of prejudice, stigma, discrimination
and violence amongst Black South Africans during the colonial apartheid
dispensation3 and now towards the Black African Other4 in the democratic South Africa. In
dialogue with the Afrikaans Bible translation it underscores the need to learn from the
lessons of the Afrikaners who fought against colonialism and imperialism in order to avoid
the pitfalls of becoming the domestic oppressors. Towards that end the essay engages in
critical reflection on the Bible translation in African languages that they do not serve the
indigenous process of resisting but reinforce continued colonial and imperial domination
through tribalism and ethnicity. It concludes by submitting that Black Theology practitioners
need to contest the power of Bible translation in African languages in order to
liberate the Bible ideology of liberation of all people and nations from colonial and
imperial ideologies which are now gullibly accepted as the Word of God.

Keywords


Bible Translation, Afrikaans and African Languages, Xenophobia/ Afrophobia, Contextualization, Black Theology

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7833/105-0-167

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ISSN 2305-445X (online); ISSN 0254-1807 (print)

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