Through a Glass Darkly: Grassroots Theology and the Music of Ghanaian Hip-Life Artist Kofi Kinaata

  • Joshua Settles Akrofi-Christaller Institute


One scarcely finds Christian Theology, the Arts, and African Tradition linked together or brought into dialogue in any formal way. The very idea that these have anything to do with one another might be seen as anathema by many African arts scholars and practitioners as well as African Christian theologians. In this paper, I utilize the concept of grassroots theology to explore, in a preliminary way, how such theology emerges from what would not ordinarily be considered sources for Christian theological reflection. I do this by dilating on the limitations of traditional sources of theological reflection, and how these limitations hinder a robust engagement with African cultural resources. I then proceed to analyse the lyrics from selected songs in the discography of Ghanaian hip-life artist Kofi Kinaata, identifying salient theological themes, as well as some pointers for future enquiry.