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Message posted on 15/07/2020

Religious Healing and Sacred Health Curing: documentary film presentation and debate (week 2)

Religious Healing and Sacred Health Curing

Webinar Registration

Please join our second biweekly webinar (25 July 2020), documentary film presentation and debate organized by the Network of the Anthropology of the Middle East and Central Eurasia of EASA in collaboration with the Religion and Society Research Cluster, Western Sydney University.

Introduction to the program by Dr. P. Khosronejad (Western Sydney University), and debate by filmmaker Dr. R. Canals (University of Barcelona), researcher of film Dr. R. Sarr (University of Oxford) and discussant Dr. R. Blanes (University of Gothenburg).

Film presentation:

Chasing Shadows

Roger Canals, 2019, 70 minutes, UK / Spain.


This film is directed by Roger Canals and filmed in Guinea-Bissau based on Ramon Sarr and Marina Temudos research, offers an intimate portrait of a prophetic movement. In Balanta, the movement is called Kyangyang, a word meaning "shadows", although its followers also call themselves Children of God. The Kyangyang prophetic movement was born in the early 1980s among Balanta farmers in rural areas of Guinea-Bissau, after a period of ecological and political crisis and after a young woman called Ntombikte, who died in 2013, started to prophesize and heal after receiving messages from God through her ancestors. She had a massive following among young men and women. Much like the prophetess, her followers could communicate with their ancestors and then either transmit messages from the high God through prophetic art and writing, glossolalia, and divination or heal in collective and individual ceremonies. The film offers a visual reflection on their unique religious creativity, where art, writing and body techniques of spirituality are intimately entangled. In the mid-1980s the Kyangyangwas repressed by the state and entered into a deep decline. In 2017, Canals, Sarro and Temudo went to film the remaining living members of the movement. But what they found, unexpectedly, was its revitalization among young people. This film is the testimony of their encounter with old and new Kyangyang, capturing some of the many forms that spiritual shadows can take depending on whether you look at them from a traditionalist, a Muslim, a Catholic or an Evangelical perspective.

This webinar will be held on Zoom.

To register please visit:


Dr. Pedram Khosronejad | Adjunct Professor

Religion and Society Research Cluster | School of Social Sciences

E: P.Khosronejad@westernsydney.edu.au

Fellow | Department of Anthropology | Harvard University

| Chief Editor, Anthropology of the Contemporary MiddleEast and Central Eurasia, SeanKingston.

| Series Editor, The Anthropology of Persianate Societies, SeanKingston.

| Series Editor, Iranian and Persian Gulf Studies, LIT Verlag.


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