Church-State Relations in Cameroon’s Postcolony: The Case of the Roman Catholic Church

  • P Konings


The socio-political role of mainline Christian churches in the African
postcolony tends to be more complex than a number of pessimistic and
optimistic scholars originally assumed. There is growing evidence that the
relations between church leaders and the authoritarian and corrupt elites,
who seek to exercise hegemony in the African postcolonial states, cannot
simply be reduced to either cooperation or conflict. This study of the
relations between the Roman Catholic Church and the postcolonial state
in Cameroon provides proof of a remarkable shift from relative harmony
in the one-party era to frequent conflicts in the current political liberalisation
era. And, even more significantly, it shows that church leaders failed to
come to a united stand on socio-political issues in both periods due not
only to personal rivalries but also to various ethno-regional cleavages.

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eISSN: 1011-7601