Missionaries as Imperialists: Decolonial Subalternity in the Missionary Enterprise on The Coast Of Cameroon 1841-1914


The coming of early missionaries to the global south in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries and their activities have received a two sided analysis. While a school of thought holds that the missionaries were motivated by a spiritual revival and response to the call to ‘go ye therefore, and teach all nations… unto the ends of the earth…what I have commanded you’[1], Decolonial and subaltern studies hold the very strong opinion that missionaries, played an ambiguous role in preparing the grounds for European occupation and the entrenchment of coloniality. Within this civilizer-colonizer debate, I argue in this paper that there is a significant amount of historical evidence to justify that missionaries served as forerunners of colonialism and have used missionary correspondences, data on their interaction with the indigenous communities as well as critical secondary literature to present the Cameroon experience.

[1] The Holy Bible, Mathew Chapter 28:20

Keywords: Decolonial, Early European Missionaries, Imperialism, Subaltern

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 23-35 (Download PDF)

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