"Thus sayeth the Lord!": A Deconstruction of the Rise of the Prophets in Ghanaian Politics


African Humanities Program Postdoctoral Fellowships


Department of Communication Studies


In what ways do Christian religious leaders shape governance in contemporary Ghanaian politics? Although research has shown that the separation of Church and State is theoretical, formal inquiries into how influential clergymen tend to become in active national politics are rare. This proposed study aims to examine how populism manifests itself through the presidential patronage of popular prophets in Ghanaian politics. Using an interpretive case study, I intend to deconstruct the media rhetoric of two popular prophets believed to belong to the two leading political parties in Ghana as well as examine President Akufo-Addo and ex-President Mahama’s own defense in response to their association with these religious leaders. Data will be gathered from formal interviews with participants, sermons of these religious politicians posted online, and radio and television interviews granted these religious leaders. The study will have implications on how logic, ethos, and faith shape the political space.