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Decolonizing Epistemic Approaches to Theological Education in The Nigerian Context: A Philosophical Analysis


Theology is a course or discipline studied in some universities and seminaries in Nigeria. It is a scholarly discipline recognized in Nigeria as a means of transmitting knowledge about God and His relationship with His creation. Various Christian denominations established theological Institutions in Nigeria. These institutions engaged in developing theological education for their various denominational purposes. The findings of this paper reveals that the approaches to theological education in Nigeria appears to be inadequate, abstract, foreign, and unable to address the existential needs of Africans and Nigerians in particular. The paper employed descriptive-analytical methods and argued that the theological epistemic approach, which deals with African existential issues, should be encouraged to help handle the African existential crises. Decolonizing epistemic approaches to theological education in the Nigerian context must be existential. This concerns the holistic development of Africa, such as health, science education, politics and the likes. The paper recommends emphasizing practicalizing theological education to help Africa overcome her peculiar developmental challenges. This means that theological education in Nigeria must pay attention to the types of knowledge and skills needed for self and societal transformation. This requires knowledge that goes beyond cognitive understanding (episteme) to include practical wisdom (phronesis) and skill (techne). Thus, there is a need for a paradigm shift in Nigeria’s theological epistemic approach from a theoretical exercise to a practical discipline that can influence people’s lives directly.

Keywords: Nigeria context, Philosophical Analysis, decolonizing, epistemic, theological education

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