Horn of Africa Bulletin Vol 26 No.2 March-April 2015
The opening article of this special issue—by Kindeneh Endeg Mihretie—describes the general public’s day-to-day life experience in Addis Ababa. The competition between the established Orthodox Church, Muslims and the relatively new Pentecostal movements to increase their sphere of influence, visibility in the public space and numbers of followers has become a permanent feature of urban culture in the Ethiopian capital. How clergy and leaders of different religious traditions portray the image of one another is the theme Michael Brislen’s article on Muslim and Christian perceptions of each other in Kenya. In his article on Kadhi courts—courts for Muslim only for jurisprudence in matters of marriage, divorce and inheritance—Hassan Ndzovu focuses on a 2010 court judgment that had declared them unconstitutional, leading to challenges by both the Kenyan government and Muslim groups. Markus Hoehne traces the evolution of Islamic movements in Somalia—from a predominantly traditional sufi-oriented culture to the emergence of groups and movements like Al-Shabab that stress a strict adherence to the original scriptures. Terje Ostebo wraps up this issue with an overview of the dynamics of religious resurgence in countries in the Horn. From social media and globalisation of communities to the local cultural and political undercurrents, Ostebo identifies a number of factors that have led to the proliferation and enhanced socio-political role of religion in states in the horn.