Babere Kerata Chacha, John Ndungu Kungu


In contemporary times, one might well say that the traditional public spaces are irreversibly shrinking and collapsing. Even more so, they argue that the loss of traditional ‘form’ secular engagement, are a consequence of globalisation. However, many Africans are increasingly invoking indigenous constructions of illness to offer explanatory models of ill health as opposed to dominant biomedical paradigms. In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, an upsurge numerous deaths happens to be linked directly to witchcraft. COVID-19 has once again exposed the shortcoming of Western medical practices in African cosmology. In this paper, we examine the concept of disease, health, and healing in the context of changing economic, cultural, and political relations in Kenya. We will pay attention to social/public responses to disease, questions of power, agency, and controversies surrounding COVID-19. We examine how both the sacred and secular spaces as sites of conflict: conflicting memories, conflicting values, conflicting interests, conflicting narratives of place and so on.


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epidemic, COVID-19, witchcraft, religion, medicine, healing, public life

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