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Religious movement among sub-Saharan Africans during the colonial era. It originated in South Africa in the 1880s, with the formation of all-African Christian churches such as the Tembu tribal church and the Church of Africa. The term was first used by Mangena Mokone when he founded the Ethiopian Church in 1892. Africans resented the blatant racism of European colonialists, who denied them advancement in religious and political hierarchies. They also wanted a version of Christianity relevant for Africa and a return to tribal life. Parallel developments occurred in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, and other locations. Ethiopian movements played some part in the Zulu rebellion of 1906 and the Nyasaland rising of 1915. In the 1920s political aspirations moved away from religion and became tied to political parties and trade unions.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Ethiopianism, visit Britannica.com.
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