Original Research - Special Collection: Broken Bodies aand Ideological Master Narratives

Steve Biko Christ-figure: A black theological Christology in the Son of Man film

Katleho K. Mokoena
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 73, No 3 | a4667 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v73i3.4667 | © 2017 Katleho K. Mokoena | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 May 2017 | Published: 27 October 2017

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Katleho K. Mokoena, Department Dogmatics and Christian Ethics, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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Son of Man (2006) is the first Jesus film to be produced in South Africa and the first Jesus film with an all-black cast amongst all films about the life of Jesus. Son of Man retells the story of Jesus from the pre-1994 South African context and the transition to democracy. The film portrays a Jesus who is concerned about social justice and seeks to dismantle systems that perpetuate and maintain subjugation, oppression, discrimination and marginalisation. The film reinforces the ideology of black consciousness and the praxis of black theology creatively and artistically through film. Jesus in Son of Man embodies the life of Stephen Bantu Biko, and Steve Biko is thus given a Christ-figure around four things: non-violence, ideology, disappearance and death. A black Christological perspective is used to analyse the nature of Jesus Christ in Son of Man.


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