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ATOMS AND ANCESTORS

BY

F.B. Welbourn

Copyright F.B. Welbourn 1968

 

INTRODUCTION

By Irving Hexham

Fred Welbourn's Atoms and Ancestors was a remarkable book which unlike so many introductory texts on African religions did not set them apart from other religions as 'primitive', 'traditional', or 'non-literate', religions to be studied because their esoteric wisdom and exotic rituals were a relic from a world we have lost. Rather Welbourn recognized the continuity between African religions and the concerns of Western educated peoples enabling him to interpret African religious traditions as dynamic faiths the study of which would enrich our understanding.

Written as a "sixth form" text Atoms and Ancestors was used to prepare for English advanced, "A", level general certificate of education examinations. That is to say the vocabulary and concepts used were at least equivalent to first or second year university courses in North America. But, because of the specific readership designated by the original publisher the book received little attention outside a narrow group of educators. As a result one of the best introductions to the study of African religion has gone unnoticed by many scholars

CHAPTER ONE

CHAPTER TWO

CHAPTER THREE

CHAPTER FOUR

CHAPTER FIVE

CHAPTER SIX

CHAPTER SEVEN

CHAPTER EIGHT

CHAPTER NINE

CHAPTER TEN

CHAPTER ELEVEN

CHAPTER TWELVE

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