Bias Volume 18 is a book that is dedicated to critically unpack the meaning of the call to re-write the Bible made by the first President of Zimbabwe, Canaan S. Banana in 1991. In this book, the author engages with Banana’s written works and makes critical observations regarding the call to re-write the Bible. This book argues that re-writing was proposed as a means to an end by Banana. It is demonstrated that what Banana intended was eradicating injustice, violence and inequality in the Middle East which was fuelled by the “ideology of chosenness”, which was sustained by a use of the Bible. Once it became clear the end was not re-writing the Bible, this work moved on to consider alternative means to achieving the same end. The search for alternatives leads the author to consider “the way of Europe”, that is, de-biblification or a watered down de-biblification, which is named partial de-biblification in this work. Finally, the author proposes a “critical biblification” as a viable alternative to re-writing or de-biblification. This book, in honour of Banana, calls for socially and contextually relevant biblical studies.
The relationship between the Bible and Children in Africa is a topic of highest relevance. This book is treating it in two main perspectives which often are intertwined:
| The exegetical perspective “Children in the Bible” is dealing with the concepts of childhood in biblical texts, asking for example: How are children conceived in different texts. What is their status in family, society and church? What is their relation to God? What is the metaphoric use of childhood in biblical soteriology? What is the function and meaning of calling adult persons “children” (of God, or of the Apostle)?
| The contextual perspective “African children of today and the Bible” is dealing with the different life settings African children find themselves in and how the Bible is present in these life settings. Here the questions for example are: What is the status of children in family and society? How are traditional concepts of childhood changing under the conditions of poverty, HIV/AIDS and violence? How are the ideas and ideals of childhood influenced by the Bible? What is the role of the Bible in child-education? Can children’s rights be established with help of the Bible?
This volume of BiAS 17 is collecting the papers presented at the 2012 BiAS meeting in Gaborone, Botswana, with some additional contributions.
This volume of BiAS is on theory and practise of biblical tranlation. In 1857, Setswana language produced the first complete Bible in a Bantu language. The second Setswana Bible was published in 1908 – the third in 1970. In each case, different circumstances, factors or contextual frames of reference dictated the need for such a Bible version. The frames converged to cause differences between the meanings of the Setswana Bibles and their sources. This book demonstrates how specific socio-cultural, organisational, linguistic, textual and communicational frames probably influenced the outcome of each Bible. It subsequently presents a framework for analysing existing Bibles and for minimising the occurrence of shifts in prospective translations. The book of Ruth is used as an example while Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (BHS) is treated as an ideal source text.
This volume was motivated by the realisation that AICs continue to be a significant player on Zimbabwe’s spiritual market. Members of predominantly Apostolic, but also Zionist, churches are highly visible in both rural and urban areas. Prophets from AICs are constantly in the news, alongside advertising their competence in urban areas. Thus it is high time to bring AICs being an important part of recent social reality in Zimbabwe back into academic focus.
BiAS 15 at the same time is ERA 1 which means that this volume opens a new sub-series to BiAS which is meant to explore religion in Africa in all its manifold manifestation, be it Christian or not.
This study offers an account of the Present Perfect and its usage in worldwide varieties of English. It is based on corpus data from the International Corpus of English (ICE), which is assessed both quantitatively and qualitatively. It follows up on two broad desiderata in Present Perfect research, namely (i) to extend the knowledge of this grammatical area beyond the traditional British/American English paradigm, and (ii) to provide a systematic account of language-external effects such as modes of discourse, macro-genres and text categories.
Occurrences of the Present Perfect are automatically extracted from part-of-speech tagged corpus files. Representative samples of the occurrences are then manually annotated for various factors (such as semantics, Aktionsart, temporal adverbials, sentence type, preceding tense, etc.) so that the distributions and the relative importance of these factors can be analyzed. In addition, the impact of alternative (non-standard) surface forms that may express a Present Perfect notion is considered.
Measures of similarity between the various varieties of English under investigation are established (e.g. with the help of multidimensional aggregational methods such as cluster analyses and phylogenetic networks) and findings are related to a number of general models of World Englishes, whose descriptive adequacy for this particular area of grammar is tested.
This volume intends to give voice to one of the local agents of religious change in Africa by listening to the voice of Paul Dzampah, a Christian singer-songwriter in Ghana.
Among the broad movement of new, post-modern Christianity in Africa the songs which are documented in this volume are kind of outstanding as the author never tried to establish his own church and never intended to make his living with his songs. We find a prophetic voice here which does not want to be “churchy” and which moves beyond the wide-spread attempt of making money with religion.
The volume refrains from intensive analysis or extensive comment. The editor rather is just documenting these texts, and leaving the scientific analysis to others.
In Germany, private retirement provision is a topic of increasing importance. The ageing population in combination with unemployment, an increasing number of temporary work contracts, more individuals who work part-time or in jobs not subject to social insurance contributions, make it problematic to finance the pensions of the retired in a pay-as-you-go financed pension system. Besides, the number of individuals not able to acquire sufficient pension claims exceeding the needs-oriented basic pension is increasing. Several pension reforms have taken place in order to alleviate the pressure on the pay-as-you-go system. In 2001, a voluntarily funded part was introduced to close the pension gap which has slowly been rising due to a declining replacement rate in the statutory pension system. Individuals now have to decide if they start to provide for retirement privately, how much they are going to save and where to invest. Such decisions require a sound knowledge of the German pension system and general financial knowledge in order to be able to approximate retirement needs and to compare financial products.
Based on the theory of saving and its behavioral refinements, a decision model has been developed in this thesis which describes each step from thinking about retirement to actually saving for retirement. Each of these steps has been investigated empirically in order to find out more about the hurdles individuals face on their way towards private retirement savings.
Based on an instrumental variable estimation, it will be shown that providing information about retirement provision alone will not be sufficient to make people think about an appropriate retirement income, to induce people to make concrete retirement plans and to increase the number of individuals who translate their plans into action. Instead of providing general pension knowledge, offering concrete and targeted information at the time it is needed might be a more successful strategy. These idea, results and conclusions stem from Oehler and Wilhelm-Oehler 2009a, 2011 who analyze the data from „Altersvorsorge macht Schule” („retirement planning goes school”). They recommend a practice-oriented, case-based financial education as well as a „meta education” to improve the „meta literacy” as shown by Oehler (2004, 2009a, 2011, 2012a, 2012d-e, 2013a-b). „Meta literacy” in this sense means that it is more important to know methods or people who can solve the problem when it appears, than acquiring all knowledge themselves being prepared to solve all possible problems (Oehler/Wilhelm-Oehler 2009, 2011; Oehler 2011, 2012a, 2012d-e, 2013a-b).
This strategy may also be successful to solve the problem of time constraints which many individuals stated to be the main reason why they would not participate in a retirement seminar. Furthermore, the confidence in one’s own knowledge seems to be more important than actual knowledge which requires measures to increase consumer confidence. Such a measure could be, for example, a hypothetical situation in which seminar participants have to evaluate the offer they received from a financial advisor (Oehler 2004, 2005b, 2006, 2011, 2012a, 2012d-e, 2013a-b).
According to the literature findings in the last five decades it is known that individuals fall back to heuristics in order to simplify decision. This behavior has also been observed in this work. Even though they own a pension product, they stated they did not try to figure out how much retirement wealth would be necessary to live an adequate retirement life. Hence, they must have followed some kind of decision rule to decide, among others, about the amount they save. Using heuristics was more prevalent among individuals owning a “Riester Pension” than among individuals owning a company pension. Since individuals with a company pension often receive information about the pension plan through the employer or via employer sponsored retirement seminars, such seminars seem likely to have the potential of increasing the number of individuals who engage in retirement planning before starting to save.
The second one is that individuals who admit that they tend to procrastinate on financial decisions are more likely to join a retirement seminar than individuals who indicate that they would rather not procrastinate. Making people aware of the widespread problem of procrastinating retirement savings might increase the number of individuals who realize that they have procrastinated retirement planning and henceforth increase the number of individuals participating in retirement seminars.
The current cultural transition of our society into a digital society influences all aspects of human life. New technologies like the Internet and mobile devices enable an unobstructed access to knowledge in worldwide networks. These advancements bring with them a great freedom in decisions and actions of individuals but also a growing demand for an appropriate mastering of this freedom of choice and the amount of knowledge that has become available today. Naturally, this observable rise and progress of new technologies—gently but emphatically becoming part of people’s everyday lives—not only changes the way people work, communicate, and shape their leisure but also the way people learn.
This thesis is dedicated to an examination of how learners can meet these requirements with the support that modern technology is able to provide to learners. More precisely, this thesis places a particular emphasis that is absent from previous work in the field and thus makes it distinctive: the explicit focus on individual learners. As a result, the main concern of this thesis can be described as the examination, development, and implementation of personal information management in learning. Altogether two different steps towards a solution have been chosen: the development of a theoretical framework and its practical implementation into a comprehensive concept.
To establish a theoretical framework for personal information management in learning, the spheres of learning, e-learning, and personalised learning have been combined with theories of organisational and personal knowledge management to form a so far unique holistic view of personal information management in learning. The development of this framework involves the identification of characteristics, needs, and challenges that distinguish individual learners from within the larger crowd of uniform learners.
The theoretical framework defined within the first part is transferred to a comprehensive technical concept for personal information management in learning. The realisation and design of this concept as well as its practical implementation are strongly characterised by the utilisation of information retrieval techniques to support individual learners. The characteristic feature of the resulting system is a flexible architecture that enables the unified acquisition, representation, and organisation of information related to an individual’s learning and supports an improved find-ability of personal information across all relevant sources of information.
The most important results of this thesis have been validated by a comparison with current projects in related areas and within a user study.
Volume 13 of BiAS series brings out into prominence issues at the bottom of dialogue between African and Christian attitudes to nature. The Shona notion of hierarchy of sacredness of nature as opposed to the intrinsic value of nature forms a barrier to a possible reconciliation between Shona and Christian attitudes to nature. This is largely based on the belief that some aspects of nature in Shona are imbued with spirits. Although sacred aspects may be accidentally protected, there is a weakness in the discriminative attitudes that leaves other aspects vulnerable. It appears the Shona have yet to extricate themselves from an ethic based on fear of ancestral spirits to conscious assessment of scientific causes of ecological imbalances. Shona attitudes to nature fail to take account of the denial of the sacredness of some aspects of nature. The Christian attitudes to nature on the other hand, propound the doctrine of the equal worth and equal integrity of all aspects of nature, rather than a discriminative sacredness of nature. The attitudes are, however, based on the assumption that nature is purely material. This position results into divergent attitudes to nature. Attitudes to nature presented from a Christian perspective appear reluctant to identify divinity with natural phenomena. Christianity suggests the idea of creation value to bridge this gap. To this end, the creation value to which Christian attitudes tend to lend support, might well act as common denominator between Shona and Christian attitudes to nature particularly in the light of eco-spirituality and move towards African-Christian environmental ethics.
BiAS 12 examines the phenomenon of prophets and prophecy in contemporary Zimbabwe. By applying insights from biblical studies and other approaches, the volume sheds light on how this contentious phenomenon has been discussed in the Zimbabwean context. The different chapters highlight the role of the Bible, gender, media, literature and other perspectives have influenced attitudes towards prophets and prophecy in Zimbabwe. While the phenomenon has been principally associated with the new wave of Pentecostalism, it remains critical to appreciate pre-existing attitudes towards prophets from African Initiated Churches (AICs), as well as traditional healers in African Indigenous Religions (AIRs). Contributors to this volume have explored the complexities that characterize prophets and prophecy. The volume is of interest to scholars in biblical studies, theology, religious studies, political science, anthropology, philosophy and other disciplines. General readers, church leaders and civil society activists will also find the chapters in this volume valuable.