Bible, Centres and Margins – Johanna Stiebert
British missionaries played a key role in the introduction of the Bible and Christianity to wider Southern Africa. In biblical studies literature in English today, postmodern methods and concepts, central among them postcolonial criticism, are increasingly popular, but there is no Commonwealth equivalent to this. In absence is a dialogue between British and African scholars. Stiebert and the contributors address this missing presence, and asks the following questions: how well do biblical scholars and students in the UK know and understand African-centred and generated approaches of Biblical criticism; how relevant do academics in southern Africa consider interpretation from centres in the UK to be for their study of biblical criticism, and in turn, how adequately does the western canon represent current scholarship in the UK? These questions reveal the areas to be probed in a British-African exchange, and the essays in this work illustrate the trends and challenges faced in biblical studies in the two centres, and how these questions can be better answered with dialogue, rather than in isolation. Southern Africa is now the region where Christianity is gaining converts at the quickest pace, while church attendance in the UK is in decline. This collection throws some light on how this is reflected in academic studies, and includes contributions from Musa W. Dube, Hugh Pyper, James Crossley and Mmapula Kebanweilwe.