Preaching the Disturbing Ghost in the Pulpit: The Use of Haunto-Postcolonial Preaching Model for the Wounded Hearers

“Through reclaiming the ghostly voices in society and in the Bible, my project explores how preaching the disturbing ghost in the pulpit can be an effective way to help traumatized communities be heard and empowered in their healing journey in a postcolonial world, where a reimagination of a better and more just future is critical for the well-being of all. ”

Team Members/Contributors

Wing Yi Wong Emmanuel College, University of Toronto Contact Me

About this dissertation fellowship

Through the use of an interdisciplinary methodology that connects the perspectives of postcolonialism, Jacques Derrida’s hauntology, and trauma theory, my project introduces “haunto-postcolonial preaching” as a new preaching model that can effectively bring healing to a traumatized community, especially one in a postcolonial world. Hauntology, an idea developed by Jacques Derrida in his discussion of the enduring legacy of Marxism, is about something that repeatedly returns from the past to remind us of a lost or yet-to-be-attained alternative reality, which prompts us to lament as well as to push forward with a better future.

I argue that the features of hauntology can shed light on postcolonial preaching. Living in a postcolonial world, many people, including the indigenous communities and those who migrate from a colonized space, are still haunted by the memories and histories of colonialism. In order for these communities to start a healing journey, it is essential that they come to acknowledge as a group the repressed and unspeakable pain hidden in the ghosts and reinterpret the significance of their traumatic experience caused by imperialism. For this reason, haunto-postcolonial preaching calls out the ghosts that appear in contemporary contexts and helps the wounded communities to connect them with the ghosts in the Bible, especially with the ghostlike Christ, in and through whom healing, redemption, and reconciliation are proclaimed.

My project will be the first to propose this new method of haunto-postcolonial preaching. The significance of this project lies in the contribution it will make to help communities that are traumatized by colonialism, including the racialized immigrants and indigenous communities in North America, in their journey of seeking healing in this postcolonial world.