“Trauma, healing and conflict: ngozi spirits in Zimbabwe” — Dr. Diana Jeater (University of Liverpool)

3:30pm - 5:00pm / Wednesday 11th April 2018
Type: Seminar / Category: Department / Series: History Seminar Series
  • Admission: Free
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Informal trauma healing initiatives based on spirit beliefs are found worldwide. In Zimbabwean Shona traditions, there is belief in a type of spirit called ngozi. This isn't a kind spirit, although it is associated with reconciliation. It uses its own form of terror to impel those who carried out atrocities and injustices to reconcile with and compensate victims’ families.

In the 1980s, ngozi spirit beliefs were widely understood as an effective indigenous way of treating PTSD. More recently, ngozi beliefs have aroused community tensions between Christians and traditionalists.This paper attempts to trace the long history of contestations over the role of spirit beliefs in trauma healing.