Evanthia PatsiaouraUp one level
Location: Belfast, United Kingdom
Institution: Queen's University Belfast
My PhD research mainly focuses on West African Pentecostal communities in diasporic settings; in particular, I discuss spheres of music- and identity-making among Nigerian Pentecostals in Greece. Pentecostal Christianities have made room for extensive and multiple types of performance, as noted in interdisciplinary literature. In Southeastern Europe, dominated by Catholic and Eastern Orthodox denominations, Pentecostalism provides migrants with a path through which to belong and identify themselves, even more, to offset discrimination in a number of ways: social, political, and racial. By embracing dignity, respect, sharing, and belonging amongst their members, such Pentecostal networks provide 'homes away from home' as well as ways of living meaningfully. I have been involved in Nigerian-initiated Pentecostal congregations in Greece during and after the official period of my PhD fieldwork (May 2012 - Sept 2013). I am particularly interested in understanding the ways in which the practice of faith among Nigerian Pentecostals contributes to the experience of self in host countries and environments. Music making, or performance broadly, is a key practice within West African Pentecostal communities both in Africa and its diasporas. Through familiar modes of performance, Nigerian Pentecostals re-experience the homeland while at the same time re-construct homes and belongings in new settings.