Communities of Compensation and Resistance

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Communities of Compensation and Resistance

This article explores the ways in which religious communities make available elements of integration to their members. Based on the fieldwork at an African evangelical church in Helsinki and Paris, I show that by providing the members a place for cultural and religious practice, access to relationships of social recognition and material protection, the church community contributes to social integration of its members. I also show that collective resistance to racial stigmatization and urban poverty are significant community effects that help the church members counter obstacles to their participation in the common social life of the host society.

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