A Zulu martyr? : what are the factors that led to the sparse and irregular public commemoration on Maqhamusela Khanyile in the Lutheran church to which he belonged?

Nürnberger, Margarete Paula Luise (2000) A Zulu martyr? : what are the factors that led to the sparse and irregular public commemoration on Maqhamusela Khanyile in the Lutheran church to which he belonged? Masters thesis, Rhodes University.

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Abstract

Personal motivation and formulation of the research problem supplies the content of chapter 1. Chapter 2 of this report surveys the approaches, methodologies and skills that have been utilized. As this is a study in spirituality the viability of plying it as an academic interdisciplinary discipline had to be affirmed. Methods, approaches and skills appropriate to this particular problem were lengthily enumerated, the most important methodologies being those of historiography (written and oral tradition) and literary sciences. Explanatory notes on the time frame within which research sources were collected, on the cut off date beyond which new material could no longer be incorporated into the research and on the spelling of Maqhamusela's name concluded the chapter. The preliminaries having been dealt with chapters 3 to 6 could deal with whether Maqhamusela was remembered and on what channels and by which means. Chapter 3 listed and described the first texts on his life and death, and attempts to assess them for reliability and assumptions. Of the 17 early sources, 1-8 and 15-17 stand out as directly relevant to the question of the remembrance and commemoration of Maqhamusela, relative to the particular perspectives of the chapters that follow. Chapter 4 lists and interprets modes in which Maqhamusela was remembered other than in written texts, an issues that had become prominent in discovering that 60 years after his death Rev Fowler and Rev Rodseth could collect new information on what had transpired. It also became evident that there had been a change in attitude among missionaries of the Norwegian Mission Society to include Zulu converts among the witnesses to Christ. Three later reports underscore the claim of one of those interviewed, "The whole area had him in their mind". If Maqhamusela was remembered the questions is for what reason. Chapter 5 gleans theoretical insights from Salisbury's studies of early martyrs (1997: 165ff) and work by Mandew (1997: 113ff) on the celebrations of the Israelites of the Bullhoek Massacre. The former emphasized that for public commemoration physical remains and a text were important, the latter followed Connerton in stipulating that communal interest fuels communal remembering. When applied to the case of Maqhamusela being remembered the theories highlight aspects that might otherwise have escaped attention, viz. the importance of the inscription on the stone, of Oftebro's initial report, of the disappearance of the corpse, and of Maqhamusela' s refusing to wear trousers, though he covered his beshu with a shirt. This chapter discovers that Stavems' inclusion of Maqhamusela and other Zulu Christians (source 13) and particularly the Zulu sketch in Incwadi yeJubilee are falting steps in writing the history of mission work in an African voice and seeing it moulded also by African hands. The chapter ends by asking whether Maqhamusela's story can touch contemporary communal interests. The issues around Oftebro' s first text and the loss of the corpse as impinging on the title accorded to Maqhamusela, and thus on public commemoration, are taken up in Chapter 6. Oftebro's refusal to refer to him as "martyr" emerges as calculated when placed into three contexts. The first is the pietistic eschatalogical spirituality and theology of the Norwegian missionaries; the second is that of the role missionaries when reporting violations of the "Coronation laws" and of Christian executions in feeding Frere's war propaganda and public opinion in England; the third the missionary's hope to be able to return to his mission in Zululand, after fleeing it in the second half of 1878. In the final chapter the various factors that led to the remembrance and public commemoration of Maqhamusela (sparse but not lacking altogether) is gathered and co-ordinated. Matters that require further investigation are listed in order to offer critique of the findings of this research and to proceed further with historical inquiry into the spirituality of Lutherans in Zululand. Since plying an academic study of spirituality is self-implicating I can gratefully attest to a growth in love and respect for her fellow Christians among the Zulus.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Maqhamusela Khanyile, Lutheran Church, South Africa, Religion, Missions, KwaZulu Natal, Zulu
Subjects:B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BX Christian Denominations
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Humanities
ID Code:3020
Deposited By: Ms Chantel Clack
Deposited On:22 Jun 2012 07:00
Last Modified:22 Jun 2012 07:00
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