Phillip A. Cantrell

Feb 10, 2022

Revival and Reconciliation

The Anglican Church and the Politics of Rwanda

University of Wisconsin Press 2022

In recent years, the media has depicted Rwanda as a model of unity, development, and recovery. Dr. Cantrell II argues that not all is as it seems in Revival and Reconciliation: The Anglican Church and the Politics of Rwanda (University of Wisconsin Press, 2022). The book argues that, from the start, the founders of the church accepted erroneous myths about Rwanda and its people and, as a result, were too closely aligned with whomever was in power. As such, the church endorsed the ruling authorities’ misleading account of Rwanda’s history and failed to take account of its own history in exacerbating ethnic tensions prior to genocide.

The book takes a critical look at the church's complicity with authoritarian rule—from the Tutsi monarchy to the Rwandan Patriotic Front. Drawing from new archival materials as well as on-the-ground field research, this research is a Rwanda-centered account of the country's ecclesiastical and national historiography. Most ominously, the book argues that the present Anglican authorities are also too closely allied with Paul Kagame and the ruling RPF, with perhaps dire consequences to come.

This interview was conducted by Dr. Miranda Melcher whose doctoral work focused on post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with qualitative analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars.

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Miranda Melcher

Miranda Melcher (Ph.D., Defense Studies, Kings College, London) studies post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with deep analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars.

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