Anthea D. Butler F'18

Anthea D. Butler
Associate Professor
Religious Studies and Africana Studies
University of Pennsylvania
last updated: 8/3/2019

Luce/ACLS Program in Religion, Journalism & International Affairs 2018
Associate Professor
Religious Studies and Africana Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Blessed and Highly Favored: Prosperity Gospel as a Nigerian Political and Social Network

The prosperity gospel as a worldwide phenomenon is restructuring not only churches but political, social, and governmental policies. This project investigates the networks of large prosperity gospel churches based in Nigeria, and their flagship churches in the United Kingdom and North America. These churches are the Redeemed Church of God, Faith Tabernacle, and the Synagogue, Church of All Nations. This study considers how prosperity gospel leaders and adherents are influencing economic and political leadership not only in Nigeria, but in the nations that they are now reverse missionizing. These churches are reframing fundamental Christian beliefs about poverty, wealth, status, and power. As a result, they are not only reframing social policies, but remaking urban spaces through their explosive growth and leadership. The results of this research will be disseminated in scholarly articles and conferences as well as in a long-form journalistic article.